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Found 35 results

  1. TheGreatBlasto

    Did the French navy fight any battles

    ...in the 20th century? Besides the one where the RN destroyed their ships in el-kebab-whatever. They had some nice ship back in the first half of the century.
  2. LittleWhiteMouse

    Premium Ship Review - Champagne

    The following is a review of Champagne, the tier VIII French premium battleship. This ship was provided to me by Wargaming for review purposes at no cost to myself; I did not pay to get access to this ship. To the best of my knowledge, the statistics discussed in this review are current as of patch 0.10.3. Please be aware that her performance may change in the future. Behold the Imperator NIkolai I of the French battleship line. Champagne has been on sale all of twice. Form June 26th to July 10th, 2020 and from October 10th until 16th, 2020. She has been locked in the vault since then, available only through lucky drops through Supercontainers. Like Enterprise before her, Champagne's sale window has been exceedingly brief which begs the question if she has been removed for over-performing or not. Well, according to my contacts at Wargaming she has neither been removed nor is she over-performing. Like the abomination known as Cheshire, she simply is not put on sale very often. Performance not-withstanding, the argument has been made that she's the worst thing in the history of ever and not good for the game. Let's go into why this ship (and others like her) earn so much ire... Summary: A long-range sniper armed with six, quick firing 406mm guns that have improved accuracy and penetration. The ship itself has weakened structural armour and survivability over other tier VIII battleships. PROS Very long ranged with a 25.02km base reach. Excellent gunnery accuracy over distance using battlecruiser dispersion and 2.0 sigma Increased rate of fire with a 28.6 second reload. Ridiculous levels of AP penetration. Very high fire chance per shell at 49% per hit. Good gun handling with a 6º/s turret rotation rate. Very fast and very agile, handling more like a fat heavy cruiser than a battleship. CONS Small hit point pool for a tier VIII battleship. Very thin belt at only 240mm. Thin overall structural plate with 32mm upper hull and deck and only 25mm on her bow and stern (!). Bad forward fire angles. Small main battery with poor overall DPM potential. Crappy anti-aircraft firepower. One fewer charges of her Repair Party than most battleships. Overview Skill Floor: Simple / CASUAL / Challenging / Difficult Skill Ceiling: Low / MODERATE / High / Extreme Champagne's game play is pretty comfortable for an inexperienced player provided they can steer away from any impulse to move up to the front lines. If said new-fish is more inclined to sit back and shoot from the A-line, then Champagne will reward them with some semi-reliable damage. Neat! I'd give her a Simple rating but she's too darned fragile and long-range gunnery does take some getting used to. Once you learn to play keep away and can lead a target comfortably? You're good to go. High-end game play with Champagne largely comes down to positioning, situational awareness and target selection. Yes, you could conceivably push up and take a cap or brawl or do all of the other loser-stuff that will most-likely get anyone but a pogchamp clobbered. There's the possibility of that. However, it's so unnecessary to get the most out of this ship. Sit back. Load AP. Farm damage. You're good to go. Options Consumables There is a lot of weirdness to Champagne and her consumables are no exception. Her Damage Control Party is standard for a French battleship. It comes with unlimited charges and an 80 second reset timer. It removes critical effects, extinguishes fires and repairs floods instantly for 15 seconds. Her Repair Party has one fewer charge than you would normally expect for a French battleship, allowing for three uses instead of the usual four. Otherwise, it behaves as expected, queuing 10% of citadel damage, 50% of penetration damage and 100% of everything else. It will heal back up to 14% of her health over 28 seconds and it has an 80 second reset timer. In her third slot, you have the choice between a Spotter Aircraft and a Catapult Fighter. The former comes with four charges, increases her main battery range by 20% (up to 30.02km!) for 100 seconds and has a 240 second reset timer. The latter launches three fighters which stay on station, orbiting the ship at a range of 3km for 60 seconds. It comes with three charges and has a 90 second reset timer. Her Engine Boost consumable provides an 8% speed increase (up to a maximum of 38.5 knots with this consumable and a Sierra Mike signal) for 180 seconds. It has a 120 second reset timer and comes with three charges. Upgrades Champagne's upgrades provide no surprises. Start with Main Armaments Modification 1. Like other French battleships with only a pair of turrets, you cannot afford to lose either one. Next up, you'll want the special upgrade Engine Boost Modification 1. This will increase the action time of her Engine Boost from 180 seconds to 234 seconds (!). It can be purchased for 17,000 from the Armory. If you can't afford that, then default to Damage Control System Modification 1. Aiming Systems Modification 1 is the only upgrade worth considering in slot three. You have a choice in slot four, with either being decent. Damage Control System Modification 2 will help mitigate fire damage. Though Champagne outranges most cruisers, she still has to contend with battleship HE spam so this is still a good idea. Alternatively, you can Just Dodge™ by taking Steering Gears Modification 1, though be warned, this won't make her cruiser-nimble and dodging only really works at very very long engagement distances. Finally, finish things off with Concealment System Modification 1. Commander Skills Well, Dead Eye is on it's way out. Champagne's nominal build included it. When it gets axed, you're probably best served just sticking to the same ol' survivability build you run on most of your French battleships anyway. This said, there's a very strong case to be made for a specialized Champagne captain that forgoes optimized fire mitigation to instead take Super Heavy AP Shells for that extra bit of long-range farming punch. Camouflage Champagne has only has access to Type 10 Camouflage, providing the usual bonuses for a tier VIII battleship: -3% surface detection +4% increased dispersion of enemy shells. -10% to post-battle service costs. +50% experience earned. Champagne's default camo is the darker of the two. The lighter alternative palette can be unlocked by completing the appropriate section of the Legion of Honour collection. Firepower Main Battery: Six 406mm guns in 2x3 turrets with one mounted fore and the other aft. Secondary Battery: Nine 152mm rifles in 3x3 turrets mounted down the centreline, twenty-four 100mm rifles in 12x2 turrets with six to a side. If you're going to make a good sniper out of a battleship, you need the appropriate toolkit. While just about any battleship with Dead Eye could sit on the back line and huck spitballs vaguely in the direction of the enemy at maximum range, to make this kind of gunnery consistent you have to be a Royal Navy battleship spamming HE (lul). To use real ammo that people won't whine about, you're going to need to have a lot of special traits to make it effective. Wargaming could have padded Champagne's gunnery by delving into their Box o' Gimmicks™ and fished out some consumables to boost her performance, but instead they went with altering her gunnery stats directly. They did this in three ways: She has improved accuracy. Her AP shell penetration is phenomenal for its calibre. Champagne has excellent range. She is purpose built for sitting on the back line and giving Hell to anything that isn't perfectly angled that falls under her crosshairs (and some targets can't angle against her at all). A Thunderous Salute This is a standard dispersion test with 180 AP shells fired at 15km at a stationary Fuso bot that had no camouflage. Shots are coming in from right to left with the Fuso effectively bow tanking. Champagne was using the Aiming System Modification 1 upgrade but not Dead Eye. And this is with Dead Eye and ASM1. Champagne seemed purpose built to take advantage of it. Or maybe that was just coincidence. It was ships like her and Thunderer that helped get this skill axed. The first piece of the Champagne sniper-puzzle is her dispersion. She joins the ranks of Georgia and Thunderer as a battleship using battlecruiser dispersion, a vast improvement over the dispersion used by the French battleship line. Champagne combines this with 2.0 sigma, clustering a bigger majority of her shells towards the centre of her aiming circle. This is an improvement over even Georgia's 1.8 sigma and Thunderer's 1.9 sigma, making her one of the most accurate battleships at long-range in the game (it's not Slava-good, but she'll get her own review and a deep-dive on vertical dispersion eventually). What is perhaps most important is that Champagne's vertical dispersion (the overshooting and undershooting of a target) is much reduced over comparable French battleships. Thus, for a battleship, her accuracy is downright reliable. Aim well, you'll get hits. However there's a double edged sword here. Aim poorly and you'll get nothing from the one-two combination of Champagne's small number of guns and the lack of scatter from her shells. Krupp is Balans™ Champagne still manages 545mm worth of penetration at 20km, making her a threat to most battleship citadels inside of her nominal range. Champagne has some of the highest AP penetration in the game for 406mm guns. At her nominal maximum range, she still manages around 500mm worth of penetration, making her fully capable of landing citadel hits against most battleships even at this considerable distance. At anything less than that and ANY battleship flashing their sides is just asking to get punished. Champagne's phenomenal AP penetration comes from a combination of factors, including a very high muzzle velocity for a battleship. But more to the point, she has a very high Krupp rating on her shells, giving her around 20% more penetration than expected at any given range. These shells are purpose built to punish battleship belt armour and at medium to close ranges, even angling isn't proof against their bite. If the shells don't ricochet, they have enough energy to bore clean through even the thickest of plate. Against more lightly armoured targets, Champagne inherits a lot of the same problems as Roma had. There's just too much speed and energy in her shells for her fuses to arm properly while still inside a cruiser. For example, to properly fuse inside a broadsiding Baltimore (152mm belt), Champagne must be at least 12km distant. For a broadsiding Cleveland-class cruiser, this range increases to in excess of 16km. The only way around this is to either dunk the shells into the water just in front of the target or to hit them while they're angled. Thankfully, Champagne's 406mm gun calibre gives her the ability to overmatch up to 28mm of armour, more than enough to punch through the extremities of any of the cruisers she faces. This isn't quite enough to best the 30mm deck and upper hull armour found on many of these ships, so it's not like it's idiot proof. The better solution is just to fire at a distance. And Champagne loves to fire at a distance. No Plunging Fire Champagne has a 25km range base. If you elect to use her Spotter Aircraft (and you SHOULD), then this increases to a whopping 30km for a short period of time. At this distance, Champagne has similar dispersion to a British, American or German battleship at 24km and still packs approximately 450mm worth of penetration (it's not quite guaranteed citadel hit range but you should still be able to land some penetrations). Champagne's shell fall angle never gets steep enough where deck penetrations is possible beyond overmatching, so you can ignore that. Sum of her Parts These three elements combine to make Champagne one of the best snipers using AP shells in the game, at least in terms of individual hits. Ignoring Slava (which is, for all intents and purposes, a Stalinium-built up-tiered improvement over Champagne), there are still other ships which do what Champagne does. But most of these are higher tiered ... and British. Champagne is to AP spam what Conqueror is to HE spam; it's easy and it chalks up an unreasonable amount of damage for so little effort all while largely keeping the ship out of harm's way. While other AP throwers have to worry about penetration (and thus engagement distances), Champagne is almost always in range and she's almost always going to be able to penetrate (if not land citadel hits). She sits so far back that the only real return fire you have to worry about comes from American battleships or vessels two tiers higher. Not only is Champagne's gunnery easy, it's stupidly safe too. Champagne has crappy DPM, what with having only six 406mm guns and nearly a 30 second reload. But don't let that fool you. As ever, there's more to the story than just DPM potential. It's too damn easy to fall into the trap of thinking that Champagne's six-guns are big liability but they really aren't. She arguably lands just as many hits as her contemporaries with fewer guns. However, her individual hits are often meatier because she's capable of (and quite likely to) land citadel AP citadel hits. The only thing that compares to the ease of her damage output are (say it with me one more time:) Royal Navy battleships slinging HE at other battleships. Champagne's damage totals are easily drawn from a larger pool of targets, as she can pick damage up from cruisers just as readily, so long as they're picked off at a distance. Given the ease at which this ship maintains said distance and her comfortable kiting angles, this is a non-issue. Champagne has very comfortable turret traverse rates of 6º/s. Her rearward arcs are much better than her forward arcs, so taking up a kiting position is preferred for maximizing firepower and defence. Summary Why use HE and who cares about her secondaries? Champagne makes sniping with AP fun. Champagne makes sniping with AP easy. Champagne can punish any ship that's not perfectly angled against her. A North Carolina angled at 55º takes a magazine citadel hit from Champagne at a range of 23.4km. This shot bothered me so much, I sent the replay into Wargaming to have them confirm the shot details. This is the kind of crap Champagne pulls off. Durability Hit Points: 52,600 Bow & stern/superstructure/upper-hull/deck: 25mm / 19mm / 32mm / 32mm Maximum Citadel Protection: 32mm anti-torpedo bulge + 240mm belt + 30mm turtleback + 50mm citadel wall. Torpedo Damage Reduction: 28%  Ships marked with an asterix (*) have re-skinned clones not listed on this chart. Champagne has Odin levels of health with Soviet battleship levels of healing. Both suck and not in the fun, sexy way. In order to apply BALANS™ to Champagne's gunnery performance, Wargaming took lessons learned from my firstborn child, HMS Thunderer, and whacked Champagne's duriability hard over the head with the nerf-bat (my second is due any day now -- stay tuned). In order to shrivel up her Gascogne-style defences, they had a four-point plan of attack. Limit the size of her hit point pool. Reduce the efficacy of her Repair Party. Shave off 25% of her belt armour and make it possible for large calibre AP shells to overmatch her turtleback. Give her heavy-cruiser structural plate on her extremities. Champagne's hit point pool wouldn't be out of place at tier VI. Her lower hit point pool means that she doesn't heal as much as other battleships but oh, it gets worse: she has one fewer charges of her Repair Party so she effectively has a smaller potential hit point pool than a lot of tier V battleships (seriously, she has less effective health than USS Texas and only slightly more than HMS Iron Duke). This has little to no bearing on her ability to heal back fires, rams and floods but when it comes to penetration damage, it takes fewer hits to sink Champagne than any of her contemporaries to a hilarious degree. Going a step further, her reduced armour and citadel protection is designed to make these damaging hits more frequent. Her 25mm extremity armour makes her vulnerable to overmatching 380mm AP shells, but it also opens the door for larger areas for destroyer and cruiser calibre HE to snatch up some of Champagne's hit points. Furthermore, her belt protection is ridiculously bad at only 240mm and her citadel protection is never any better than a combined total of 352mm (though it's as low as 332mm). While the different angles present, the effective thickness is higher than this -- for example, a North Carolina shell tossed at 18km has roughly an 18º shell fall angle. Accounting for the 6º of normalization, a perfectly broadside Champagne's 332mm combined armour over her machine spaces increases to a whopping 352mm or so. Yeah, the angles of her armour aren't really that effective. Champagne's armour protection scheme is that of a thoroughbred battlecruiser. Her citadel roof lies one level down, matching the top of the 355mm transverse bulkhead. It's armour thickness is 40mm. The root of her barbettes is 85mm thick. Champagne's crappy durability balances her the same way Asashio's inability to torpedo destroyers and cruisers balances her: It doesn't. Asashio doesn't have to engage cruisers and destroyers in order to be effective and Champagne doesn't have to expose herself to enemy fire in order to hoover up big damage. So none of this really matters because Champagne is so long ranged that she's not really going to take all of that much hurting unless you put her in harm's way. And there's no need to put her in harm's way. VERDICT: Squishy but it doesn't really matter. Agility Top Speed: 34 knots Turning Radius: 850m 7Rudder Shift Time: 15.5 seconds 4/4 Engine Speed Rate of Turn: 4.7º/s at 25.4 knots The other reason you don't need to put Champagne in harm's way is that it's so gosh-darned easy to play keep-away. Her top speed of 34 knots is faster than a number of tier VIII cruisers and that's before you account for her access to her Engine Boost consumable. Seriously, Champagne is faster than Baltimore, Cleveland, Montpelier, Wichita, Anchorage, Chapayev, Tallinn, Mikhail Kutuzov, Admiral Hipper, Prinz Eugen, Mainz, Edinburg, Albemarle, Cheshire, Belfast '43, Irian, Wukong and Charles Martel. And those are just the tier VIII cruisers. It's a shorter list once you account for all of the other cruisers in her matchmaking spread and you need to add on a handful of destroyers besides. Champagne is fast. Anyone that's paid attention to my semi-coherent rants and explanations about warship rates of turn, speed is the name of the game. Tight turning radii are great and all, but without the speed to navigate those turning circles, it's all for naught. Champagne's high speed means that she has the best rate of turn of any of the tier VIII battleships, even better than the previous SoDak front-runners, Alabama and Massachusetts. It's a good thing her turret traverse rates are so good so she doesn't out-turn her turrets. It would be a mistake to think that Champagne's speed and agility allows her to Just Dodge™ the way a cruiser or destroyer can. She can't make torpedoes whiffa yu . She's not that nimble. However, put enough distance between Champagne and whatever is shooting back at her and yes, between varying throttle and course, you can throw off a lot of steel and high explosive thrown her way. This is where that 25km range and excellent penetration on her main guns once again comes into play. Champagne can comfortably operate 20km distance from targets, dealing reliable damage and this just so happens to put her far enough away that her tush-wiggle becomes good enough to avoid shells coming back. This in turn mitigates the deficiencies of her armour protection, largely making it a non-issue. And I remind you, her rearward fire angles are very good. She's purpose built for playing keep-away. Champagne has the best agility of any of the tier VIII battleships and her on-demand Engine Boost consumable makes it even more pronounced. With a Sierra Mike signal and her Engine Boost active, Champagne's rate of turn spikes at 4.8º/s but increases her turning circle to a 900m radius. VERDICT: The best at her tier (and the best at tiers VII, IX and X too). Anti-Aircraft Defence Flak Bursts: 5+1 explosions for 1,260 damage per blast at 3.5km to 5.8km. Long Ranged (up to 5.8km): 140dps at 75% accuracy Medium Ranged (up to 3km): 52.5dps at 75% accuracy Short Ranged (up to 2.5km): 112dps at 70% accuracy There's only one real problem with Champagne's AA defence and that's where it comes to the DPS totals from her medium and short-range mounts. She has decent long-range fire. She also spits out a decent number of flak clouds (admittedly, these don't hit as hard as her contemporaries, but whatever). So in a big ol' cuddle puddle of mutually supporting AA fire, she pulls her weight, adding some good long-range damage. It's only when planes take a particular interest in her (or if they perform a fly-over) that she doesn't have the teeth to do more than mildly inconvenience a carrier. This is a weakness to be sure, but to bring up my earlier comparison, Asashio also has crappy AA firepower and that's not really a drawback for something that's so far away from the action. Sure, if Champagne is the only target on a given flank where a CV is operating, she's going to get dropped on. But if she's at the back of the pack, is it worth taking the extra fly-time to dunk on her? Maybe. Maybe not. In the end, I don't think it really matters. Few battleships are a significant enough obstacle to bring tier VIII and X carriers pause and tier VI carriers (generally) have to respect all higher tiered AA. Champagne's AA power (third from the bottom) is all kinds of crappy which is distinctly out of character for the high-tier French battleships. VERDICT: Bad, but that's okay. Vision Control Base/Minimum Surface Detection: 16.38km / 12.87km Base/Minimum Air Detection Range: 11.01km / 8.92km Detection Range When Firing in Smoke: 15.82km Maximum Firing Range: Between 25.02km and 30.02km Champagne's biggest weakness is that her game play is reliant upon other people doing the spotting for her. Were Champagne ever forced to do the spotting herself? Well, then things like her armour or hit point deficits might mean something. But as it is, you're all but guaranteed to have someone able to light something up for Champagne to shoot at. And odds are, there will either be someone closer to the target for them to shoot at or Champagne will be so far back that she can make it exceedingly difficult to hit her. It's really only in very close games or in losing matches where Champagne's vulnerabilities owing to reliance on friendlies doing the spotting really come into play. The hope is that she's done enough damage and mauled her opponents to such a degree that this should be a non-issue. Similarly, she is fast enough to redeploy to hide behind someone else's skirts if needs be; again, taking the onus away from her to detect her own targets. Overall? It's not terrible. VERDICT: It's not terrible. Maybe it should have been. Final Evaluation Champagne's gameplay in a nutshell. It took a long time for Wargaming to realise their concept of a sniper battleship. The final iterations as evidenced by Florida, Slava and Champagne, have three elements in common: Very long range. Improved gunnery. Reduced survivability. Kinda. See, there are technically four of these sniper-battleships in World of Warships but HMS Thunderer did as HMS Thunderer does and ruined everything for everyone (and I could NOT be more proud). While my accidental British love-child has reduced survivability compared to Conqueror, it's nowhere near nerfed enough to matter. Ironically, I still don't think Wargaming has quite made these sniper fragile enough, but here we are. I still personally feel that the original version of Duke of York with no heals whatsoever is the way to go but I am not being listened to, otherwise we would have seen this on HMCS Yukon. But enough of my dream-botes. Sniper-battleships in World of Warships are as effective, compelling and healthy for the game as the Royal Navy battleships and aircraft carriers. They're about as fun too. It's HILARIOUS when you're the one dropping bombs on the enemy but it's Fun and Engaging™ when you're on the receiving end (please note the sarcasm). Yes, there's skill involved with playing Champagne well. Yes, you have to pick your targets. Yes, positioning matters. Yes, you can suck at it and do poorly. However, sniping in a battleship is World of Warships comfort-food: It's simple, straight forward and easy game play that gives you the euphoria of seeing big numbers and citadel ribbons appearing up on your screen. While playing Champagne I couldn't help but think back to when I was seeing how easy it was to farm Witherer medals with Conqueror. It was initially shocking at just how achieveable it was. Champagne reminds me a lot of that. She's not an "I win!" button, but barring RNGeebus saying "very no", getting good a good damage farm going was all but guaranteed, win or lose. My contact at Wargaming have told me that Champagne isn't over-performing. I don't know what their numbers are looking like, but from third party sites, Champagne is one of the highest damage dealers at tier VIII right now. Her bias is going to come from sniping other battleships, so it's to be expected, however unlike Asashio who shares this same target preference, Champagne can (and does!) pick on cruisers and other ship types too. So is Champagne good? Sure. She gets big numbers. Like playing a sniper in a First-Person Shooter, you get to feel like a professional badass, clicking on heads so long as your team's front lines hold up. If you can farm damage fast enough, it can turn games around. But big numbers in of themselves don't win games. I keep coming back to comparing Champagne to the Royal Navy battleships and there's a reason for it. The damage numbers these ship generate is disproportionate to their win rates. You don't play Champagne to win. You play her to farm damage. To me, she proves that battleship HE spam isn't cancerous so much as damage farming itself is. Champagne is not a team-player. She is a very selfish boat and that's why I keep coming back to the British BBs. She's great at what she does but not great for your team and arguably not good for the game either. With that in mind, she's totally a safe purchase if this kind of game play appeals. As for me? I'm emotionally obligated to stick with Thunderer. Remember, if it's not Champagne, then it's sparkling white cancer.
  3. LittleWhiteMouse

    Premium Ship Review: Dunkerque

    Please be aware that all of the statistics and performance discussed in this post reflect the version of the ship as she appeared during the testing period. These are subject to change before release. The following is aimed at new(ish) players looking to find a little more information about various ships from events, for premium currency or for real-world cash. The goal is to allow players to make an educated decision before parting with their time and money and to find premium vessels that suit their chosen style of play, whether that is competitive, cooperative, or simply for fun. The idea here is to elabourate on information not commonly available through reading statistics and provide some (heavily) biased anecdotal evidence to encourage or dissuade you from making your purchase. The usual disclaimers apply: everyone knows the Matchmaker clearly loves me because I spend money so that's why I occasionally get really good games, not because I have any particular skills of note. Other articles in this series: Ships for Doubloons: Atlanta, Texas, Tachibana, Atago, Ishizuchi, Diana, Aurora,Murmansk, Molotov, Mikhail Kutuzov, Emden, Tirpitz, Campbeltown, Warspite, Blyskawica Limited Release Ships: Fujin, Kamikaze, Katori, Yubari, Gremyashchy, Krasny Krym, Imperator Nikolai I, Anshan, Lo Yang, Smith, Sims, Marblehead, Indianapolis, Arizona, Saipan, Scharnhorst, Dunkerque Gift & Reward Ships: Albany, Arkansas, Flint, Iwaki, Mikasa, Arpeggio of Blue Steel Ships: Kongo, Kirishima, Haruna, Myoko Condensed Reading: Mouse's Quick Summary of Premium Ships Without further ado: The Tier 6 French Battleship Dunkerque "Battlecruiser 2: Revenge of the Battlecruiser" Quick Summary: A lightly armed and armoured battlecruiser with eight 330mm guns mounted between two quadruple turrets on the bow. The ship is fast, her reloads are quick and her muzzle velocity is excellent. Cost: Undisclosed at the time of writing this article. Patch & Date Written: 2016.07.30 & 2016.08.12, Patch 0.5.9 to 0.5.9.1 Closest in-Game Contemporary: Molotov Degree of Similarity: Clone / Sister-Ship / Related Class / Similar Role / Unique Despite the superficial similarities to the Izumo, the Dunkerque has much more in common with the play style of the Soviet premium cruiser, Molotov. Both are fast, fragile vessels with more speed than agility. Yet they both rely on engaging enemies at range with hard hitting alpha strikes from high-muzzle velocity weapons. Both are unable to conceal themselves. They are gunship support vessels, relying on clever use of speed and turning to keep themselves safe from reprisals. PROs: All of her guns are mounted on the bow, making it easy to maximize firepower. Fast turret rotation of 5' degrees per second. Good rate of fire with a 28 second reload. Excellent muzzle velocity on shells of 870 & 885m/s between AP & HE. Good HE performance with 4800 alpha strike and 35% chance of starting a fire. Excellent range of 18.2km which can be extended with a float plane. Secondaries have a 5.0km range Fast with a top speed of 29.5 knots. CONs: All of her guns are mounted on the bow. She is unable to fire to the rear. Turrets are very vulnerable at close ranges. Losing one halves her firepower. Ship ripple fires 4 guns at a time. Lowest alpha strike and Armour Piercing DPM of any of the tier 6 Battleships. Very weak belt armour and citadel protection of only 225mm. Small secondary gun battery compliment with highly restricted arcs. Poor overall AA defense. Sluggish handling, with a large turning circle of 730m. Very large surface detection range of 16.4 km. The first of the French Navy warships has arrived in the form of the Dunkerque. This all-bow mounted gun design will be something we see repeated in the Richelieu-class and may become something the French ships are known for. Once more into the breach. Today Lert and I will be looking at the first French warship to join World of Warships -- the Dunkerque. She's an odd ship, a true Battlecruiser in my opinion and she needs to be played as such to get the most out of her. I had a lot of success with her right out of the gates though speaking with other contributors, this wasn't something that was universal. This prompted a long discussion about her merits and flaws and I'm happy to share them with you today. Lert will be joining me, providing a voice of moderation to my more emotionally enthusiastic descriptors. You can find his contribution in the separated (and ostracized!) Lerboxes. Take it away, grumpy-kitty-man! The Lertbox Once again LWM has graciously allowed me some space in her review to post my own thoughts about an upcoming premium ship. This time a ship that I had some trouble getting my head around, but which after a dozen battles or so finally started to 'click'. It's the first French ship in the game, and it offers a unique and unprecedented playstyle. But then, it wouldn't be properly French if it didn't have some quirks to set it apart, would it. For this review I will be comparing her to Fuso, New Mexico and Warspite. Options There are no surprises with the Dunkerque. If you were hoping for some unique French flavour to be found in her consumables or modules, I didn't find any present here. The only option she has unique to Battleships at tier 6 is the option of swapping out her Spotting Aircraft for a Catapult Fighter, but that's hardly enough to get excited about. She does not get access to the Artillery Plotting Room 1 Modification. That remains American only.Her Damage Control party conforms to the standard we've seen so far for German and Russo-Soviet Battleships. This provides a 15s immunity window and a 120s / 80s reset timer. Similarly, her Repair Party is also standard, restoring up to 14% of her maximum base HP per charge. Consumables: Three slots Damage Control Party Repair Party Your choice of a Spotting Aircraft or Catapult Fighter. Module Upgrades: Four slots, standard options. Premium Camouflage: Tier 6+ standard. This provides 50% bonus experience gains, 3% reduction in surface detection and 4% reduction in enemy accuracy. Firepower Primary Battery: 330mm in 2x4 turrets mounted in an A-B superfiring configuration. Secondary Battery: 130mm in 2x2 turrets in wing mounts, and 3x4 turrets on the stern. The most defining feature of the Dunkerque is the layout of her primary battery. She has only two turrets but they sport four guns each. At 330mm, these are the smallest caliber weapons found on a Battleship at tier 6. You could be forgiven for expecting them to have a bunch of excellent traits to justify her matchmaking weight. The Bad News Let's get the bad news out of the way. The Dunkerque is not going to be wracking up big damage totals as quickly as her peers. She's an eight-gun Battleship with a lot of short comings in terms of firepower. The Dunkerque is competing head to head with twelve-gun, Super-Dreadnoughts like the New Mexico-class, Fuso-class and the Arizona. The Bayern and Warspite may also only have eight guns, but their shell caliber is much larger at 380mm. While the Dunkerque has an accelerated reload to help prop up her DPM, this isn't any faster than the Fuso's. At 28s per volley, she doesn't really gain any ground n the DPM race. The Dunkerque's armour piercing DPM weighs in at a theoretical maximum of 166,300hp, while the twelve gun Dreadnoughts all top well over 215,000hp. Even the Jutland veterans manage over 175,000hp with their eight guns. To put this into perspective, the tier 5 Kongo with a 30s reload manages 163,200hp. The Really Bad News On paper, her secondary compliment looks like it can take up some of the slack from her primaries. With a total of sixteen 130mm rifles mounted in some impressive looking turrets, they have an excellent range for their tier of 5km. However, the angles at which they can fire are horrid. All of the quad-mounts are facing the stern and will only engage enemies once they clear well past 40' off the bow of the Dunkerque. This is hardly ideal with her primaries all mounted forward. It's best to forget any pretense of her secondaries helping at all. This leaves only a pair of 130mm rifles off each side (each in a dual mount) that will attack enemies coming from the front. The Really, REALLY Bad News I was hoping to see the Dunkerque's 330mm turrets modeled with their historical compartmentalization when it came to taking damage. Without going into too much detail, the big quad-mounts were divided into two pairs of guns so that a single hit to the turret wouldn't deprive their ship of half their firepower. If modeled correctly in World of Warships, while the ship would have two turrets, it would take four separate critical strikes to knock out all of her guns. Except it isn't present here. I heard rumours to the effect that the game engine couldn't handle half of the turret being knocked out at a time. I don't know the truth of this rumour but it sounds feasible enough. Hopefully this could be remedied in the future, the same way AA mounts couldn't be mounted on turrets previously. As it stands, the Dunkerque's 330mm turrets can and will be knocked out wholesale by single hits. Though effectively immune to 203mm batteries head on up to (and including) point blank range, even the 283mm rifles off of the Scharnhorst are capable of catastrophically damaging the Dunkerque's turrets. As you'll want to be facing bow on to enemies to minimize her profile, your gun mounts often take the brunt of the punishment. Don't be surprised if you lose a turret. Don't be surprised if you lose both turrets if you end up in close-range encounters with enemy Battleships. The main batteries of the Dunkerque are not compartmentalized. Critical hits will temporarily damage or destroy the entire turret, not two guns at a time. Why Can't I Quit You? Yet for all of these faults (and some minor ones besides), the Dunkerque's gun batteries perform very well. The first thing you'll notice is that she has rather fast turret traverse. At 5' per second, she'll complete a 180' rotation in 36 seconds -- except that she never really has to complete a 180' rotation. With all of her guns mounted on the bow, adjusting fire takes mere moments. Tracking targets or acquiring a new one is a breeze. And let's emphasize this. All of her guns are on the bow. Short of wiggling your tush at the enemy, you can always fire all eight guns at a target. This is something the other Battleships can't boast -- not without risking exposing themselves to return fire and getting spanked. The Dunkerque can point her snout right at the enemy and confidently unload all eight barrels with every reload cycle. My feeling is that while she may not have the same theoretical DPM as her competition, it's far easier to maximize the DPM of the Dunkerque than say the Fuso, Arizona or New Mexico. And it gets better. Her shell grouping is downright fantastic. Unlike recent German Battleships, the Dunkerque's dispersion is very kind. On paper, she has the same linear value as the German warships, however the concentration of all four guns in close proximity combined with what appears to be a very favourable sigma variable means that her shells seem to stick together in flight and land in tight clusters. You can (and should) equip Aiming Systems Modification 1 to further capitalize on this great accuracy. With very little flight time from her high velocity shells, you can try taking pot shots at even elusive targets like dodging cruisers and slippery little destroyers with surprising levels of success. At 9,700 damage per AP shell, this is punchy enough to really thoroughly gut a target that you hit. While it pales compared to the 380mm of the Bayern or Warspite, it's less than 1000hp behind the New Mexico and Arizona. This is enough to make a cruiser suffer a significant emotional event when you disembowel him with a single hit. With her accuracy, it's rare that it's lone shells that strike the target in this manner. With some good aim, you will readily print yourself some Devastating Strike medals. Against heavily armoured or angled targets, you can reach for her fantastic HE shells. With 35% per shell to start a fire, the Dunkerque's HE volleys are something to be respected, especially with their 28s reload. Stacking fires is childishly easy and you can force higher tiered Battleships to turn away when sufficiently scalded. The Lertbox Artillery: Dunkerque has eight 330mm rifles, in two quadruple turrets mounted up front. While historically these turrets were subdivided into two groups of two barrels per turret separated by a thick armored bulkhead, in-game this is not the case. These turrets behave as two quad-barrel turrets, and getting one turret knocked out means you lose half your firepower. Further bad news comes in the form of having the lowest theoretical DPM in class and tier, significantly behind Warspite even. Finally, their dispersion is nothing to write home about either. Fortunately that's where the bad news ends. Dunkerque turrets have the best traverse time in class and tier, and the guns reload the quickest of the four battleships in this comparison. Also, because of the way the guns are mounted, the shells leave the ship in a nice tight cluster which negates a part of her bad dispersion. Finally, despite all the major caliber guns being up front, this French fighting lady has remarkably generous 'over the shoulder' shooting angles. Still her low alpha damage and low DPM means Dunkerque loses this category. New Mexico comes third, with a powerful set of 14" /50 guns, but the range and dispersion let her down. Warspite comes second in this category with the power of a heavy 15" and very accurate punch, but the sheer range and volume-of-fire of Fuso gives the fighting Geisha the win here. Dunkerque: 1 pt Warspite: 3 pts New Mexico: 2 pts Fuso: 4 pts Secondary firepower: On paper Dunkerques secondary battery is not bad with a total of sixteen 130mm guns, but the way they're mounted mostly in the rear gets in the way; the arcs are just horrible and superstructure often gets in the way, precluding the secondary turrets from acquiring targets. Plus, the use of quad turrets means that a single hit to a secondary turret can seriously cut into your backup firepower. Warspite shares the same 5km base secondary range that Dunkerque has, but boasts a more intelligent layout of her eight 102mm and eight 152mm guns. New Mexico has the familiar mid-tier american 127mm guns divided into anti-surface and dual-purpose guns, but they only reach out to 4km base. Fuso brings to bare an impressive set of eight 127mm guns and a further fourteen 152mm cannons. She wins this category, despite these guns only having a range of 4km. Dunkerque: 1 pt Warspite: 3 pts New Mexico: 2 pts Fuso: 4 pts Summary: Great gun handling with a fast turret rotation and good range. Easy to maximize firepower and keep all eight barrels singing. Only modest alpha strike potential from AP. HE is decent. Lowest potential DPM. Guns are very accurate with excellent shell grouping. The potential of her secondaries are limited by poor gun arcs. Losing a gun halves her firepower. Ill suited to brawling other Battleships. The Dunkerque can make a very dangerous opponent for destroyers that get too close. While her secondary armament is light and poorly arranged, her main battery is very easy to bring to bear. With good HE shells, excellent accuracy and tight shell grouping, enterprising destroyers can find themselves taking several penetrating hits at a time. This poor Minekaze made this discovery to her cost as did the Kiev the Dunkerque sank moments before with the same trick. ManeuverabilityTop Speed: 29.5 knotsTurning Radius: 730mRudder Shift: 14.0s The Lertbox And this is where the good news begins. Dunkerque is the most mobile and agile out of these four ships. Despite having the second largest turing circle, her high top speed and par rudder shift means she feels very agile, and can flex across the map far better than the other ships. And now the bricks: Warspite is second despite a relatively pedestrian top speed, but the best turning circle of the four and par rudder shift. Fuso comes third with a fair-to-middling top speed, but it's her turning circle that lets her down, combined with the fact that Dunkerque will easily race past. New Mexico is last, at this tier a 21 knot top speed just doesn't cut it anymore. Dunkerque: 4 pts Warspite: 3 pts New Mexico: 1 pt Fuso: 2 pts The Dunkerque has a really good top speed. And it will get you killed on occasion. At 29.5 knots, she's the fastest of the tier 6 Battleships. This isn't by a small margin either with a 4.5 knot advantage over her closest competitor. This exceeds all of the 7 Battleships as well with the exception of the Scharnhorst against which she can claim near parity. It's important to keep the engagement range up in the Dunkerque when there are enemy Battleships present. The flip side to this is that you do want to get closer to cruisers and the occasional destroyer to ensure their demise. It's very tempting in the Dunkerque to find yourself a good gunnery position and then cut the engines. Bow onto the enemy, with your finger on the rudder for little adjustments, you can easily seesaw back and forth at 1/4 to 1/2 ahead and then alternate with reverse to throw off the aim of your opponents. Players of the North Carolina will recognize this maneuver. With all of your firepower mounted on your forward decks, it's easy to see the merits of not moving if you don't have to. Smart opponents will punish you for this though. As a Battlecruiser, her speed is supposed to be her armour and there will be times you will need to open up the throttle. While her straight-line speed is excellent, her handling is best described as poor. With a similar turning radius and rudder shift to the Fuso, she doesn't corner well or quickly. The one consolation is that she will not out turn the traverse of her guns. Still, when engaging enemies at the limits of her range, even this poor agility can throw off the desperate return-fire of your opponents. The Dunkerque pursues a fleeing Cleveland-class cruiser through the narrows of the Two-Brothers archipelago at nearly 30 knots. DurabilityHit Points: 52,600Citadel Protection: Up to 225mm.Bow & Deck Armour: Minimum of 25mm each.Torpedo Damage Reduction: 27% The Lertbox Here again Dunkerque shows herself to be a ship of extremes. She is by far the softest of the four ships on trial here, possessing the lowest hit-points, the thinnest armor and the second worst torpedo belt. But it's worse than that. While on paper her armor should be better than that of Kongo at tier 5, in practice it feels a lot worse. Dunkerque can't tank hits to save her life. Kongo's armor is troll. Dunkerque's armor is paper. Anything more than 20 degrees off a bow-on position, and Dunkerque's armor starts falling apart versus 14" AP, with 15" AP and bigger just being able to sail clean through the tin foil and into the gooey bits inside. New Mexico is the other extreme. Tough, tanky, hard to take down. She is followed by Warspite which retains her troll armor and good hit-point pool, despite her healing potion having been nerfed before. Fuso takes up third place. Despite being the healthiest of the four ships, she has the second thinnest armor and a lot of holes in it you can exploit when she's angled to your fire. Dunkerque: 1 pt Warspite: 3 pts New Mexico: 4 pts Fuso: 2 pts So ... 225mm of belt armour. That about summarizes the fragility of the Dunkerque. Think of the Dunkerque like a tier 6 Kongo and you get a better appreciation of how much damage she'll take from various sources. You can bounce battleship shells off her belt with some angling and the 25mm of bow armour is proof against most 356mm rounds thrown at you. The landscape of tier 6 battles is changing, however. 380mm will soon be the new normal, found on the Bayern as well as the Warspite. Like the 410mm guns found at tier 7, these can and will overmatch the 25mm sections of your bow and deck and result in penetrating hits, regardless of the angle. It's worth speaking again about the vulnerability of her turrets. The casemates have a maximum of 225mm of armour, which makes them rather vulnerable to Battleship caliber shells. Thankfully, the front face is rather small -- little taller than the gun barrels themselves and the roofs of the turrets are sloped. However, torpedo strikes hitting the bow or midships can also knock them out as the blast damages the barbettes or ammunition magazine. She has poor torpedo mitigation so be very conscious of this. Sitting stationary, bow onto the enemy is just asking to get plastered by these large caliber shells or long range torpedoes. This is where the speed of the Dunkerque becomes key and you'll need to keep the distance open to give yourself time enough to shift and dodge incoming fire -- or at least minimize the damage it will do. Concealment & Camouflage16.9km Surface Detection, 12.0km Air Detection You're not hiding this ship. Battleships generally have poor concealment. However, there's poor concealment and then there's poor concealment. In her matchmaking spread (from tier 5 through to tier 8) only two Battleships have a larger surface detection range, and that's the Fuso & Nagato. The Colorado comes close at 16.7km. Why is her poor concealment a big deal? The Dunkerque will usually be one of the first ships spotted. Short of having a Fuso beside you, you can count on being the first target lit on your team. This means that every gun on the enemy team will be pointing at you from the onset and you need to take defensive measures immediately until more of your team engages and fire disperses among your allies. The hail-mary shots from every Battleship will be heading your way early on in the match, so take care. Her large surface detection range also makes it easy for stealth-gunships -- those boats that can sit in open water and fire without being spotted, to pick out the Dunkerque. Short of clever use of terrain, you'll never be sneaking up on anyone. The Lertbox Warspite wins, New Mexico second, Dunkerque third, Fuso last. It's as simple as that. Dunkerque: 2 pts Warspite: 4 pts New Mexico: 3 pts Fuso: 1 pt Anti-Aircraft DefenseAA Battery Calibers: 130mm, 37mm, 13.2mmAA Umbrella Ranges: 5.2km, 3.0km, 1.2kmAA DPS per Aura: 54dps, 12dps, 40dps Time for some more bad news: The Dunkerque has rather poor anti-aircraft defense. As a Battleship scuttled in 1942, she never received the upgraded AA armaments that became commonplace later on. Think of her like the Arizona ... but worse, which is definitely saying something. She does have some good range with her 130mm dual-purpose secondaries and they're pretty punchy for their tier but her smaller caliber weapons really let her down in either DPS or range. You could attempt to bolster her poor numbers by heavily investing into anti-aircraft buffs -- most notably, Basic Fire Training, Advanced Fire Training & Manual Fire Control for AA Armament from your Captain skills. This would boost her 130mm DPS from 54dps to 130dps at 6.2km against targets that you manually select.. Still, even coming in the 650hp pulses every 5 seconds, the Dunkerque will not be likely to shoot down more than a plane or two before competent CV players complete their attack runs. This will murder any planes that loiter around her and is worth considering. You can also prop up her flagging AA power with the choice to use her Catapult Fighter instead of a Spotter Aircraft. I have found these to be very handy in helping relieve some pressure off my Dunkerque, but these aircraft never last long in the face of a concerted attack. Still, this is a pretty heavy investment to nudge her AA rating from "poor" to barely acceptable. Still, when working with other warships, you can surprise yourself by racking up a good number of air-kills this way. The Lertbox Dunkerque's AA is just a hair above 'terrible'. She has the lowest DPS at all ranges out of the four ships on trial here. Warspite's is better, but only just. Fuso manages to beat them both, by a very small margin, but the clear winner here is New Mexico. Not that this surprises anybody... Dunkerque: 1 pt Warspite: 2 pts New Mexico: 4 pts Fuso: 3 pts The Dunkerque burns after being struck by American dive bombers. She was unable to shoot down any of the attack planes as they made their approach, but she shoots down two before they escaped with the help of her Catapult Fighter. Overall Impressions Mouse' Summary: Interesting guns, both in gun layout and performance but hampered by low overall DPM. Prefers to engage at range and very vulnerable in a brawl. Poor armour protection. Losing a gun halves her firepower. Good speed, poor agility and impossible to hide. Meat on the table for enemy CV attacks. The Lertbox Adding up the numbers: Dunkerque amassed 10 points Warspite gathered 18 points New Mexico scrounged 16 points Fuso tallied 16 points So, Warspite is the best and Dunkerque is hopelessly outclassed? I'm sure LWM will consider half of that statement undeniable truth and to anyone trying to play Dunkerque like a typical battleship the second half would ring true as well. Dunkerque can work, in the hands of a skilled player who understands her intricacies and follies, and in certain situations. But in the hand of the average player, this French ship will fold and collapse like a house of cards. She also really doesn't hold her own against tier 7 and 8 battleships. Dunkerque is a showpony. Warspite, New Mexico and Fuso are workhorses. If you drive Dunkerque like she was made out of glass, you can make her work. 'Play her like Molotov' you'll hear people say. I'm more tempted to say 'play her like a tank destroyer in WoT'. Park her next to a rock to protect your flank, keep your bow pointed at the enemy and let the rest of your team go first - because if you get focused, you die, and quickly so. Present the smallest target, keep map features between you and any flanking enemy, and Dunkerque might even reward you with her unusual play style. Objectively, there's not a lot to like about the Dunkerque. She pays a very big price for having all of her firepower easily accessed upon her snout. Bad armour, bad handling, bad camouflage, bad anti-aircraft guns, bad secondaries ... bad, bad, bad. So why the heck do I love her? I think it's a simple case of the comfort level that comes with the ease of use of her guns. Unlike other Battleships, I never found myself fighting with her guns. They turn well (and they never have to turn much). And the shots go where you point them. There's little to none of this wonky fire where shells go flying everywhere, so it gets pretty easy to stack appreciable damage with her. And for that, I think I was willing to forgive a whole lot. When you compare her gun handling to other Battleships, it's hard to find one that has the same combination of good turret traverse with good accuracy and a good range and a non-punitive reload. Playing the Dunkerque was relaxing for me, like lying on the beach at Marseilles. Her carry potential really isn't there, let's be honest. She specializes in murdering cruisers and when those targets dry up, she's a little out of her element. Though she's classified as a Battleship, she's truly a Battlecruiser at heart. Her guns can out-range and out-muscle any cruiser she might face. And she's got the speed to out run the Battleships she can't outfight. It's a bit of a delight to see that this original design brief for a Battlecruiser is alive and well in the Dunkerque... even if it is a little underwhelming overall. If this style of play doesn't appeal, I would keep clear of her. Would I Recommend?Yeesh, this is going to be a tough one to recommend. For Random Battle Grinding: Mouse: Maybe? You'll get your money's worth here. Her accuracy and gun handling will make farming the damages (and thus the credits and experience) easy enough. At tier 6, you're not going to recoup tons of credits. Also, keep in mind that as a Battleship, you're likely going to be running with at least one premium consumable, so that's going to eat into your earnings. I found her a delight to play, but she doesn't have tremendous carry potential. So that in turn is going to hurt those looking to pad their win rates. She can do very well, but like the Molotov, you need to do well early with overwhelming ad strategically placed damage to effect a win. Lert: No. She requires a silken touch and a captain who pays constant attention. Plus, she gets her face pushed in by tier 7s and 8s. For Competitive Gaming: Mouse: No. I wouldn't recommend the Dunkerque for things like Team or Ranked Battles. She takes damage too easily and losing one turret to a single torpedo or volley of shells will really set your team back. There are much better ships at her tier. Lert: Oh hell no. For Collectors: Mouse: She's the first French ship in the game. That's novel enough for many to grab her. She didn't have an illustrious career, so that tarnishes her worth, but at least she's a historical vessel. Lert: Yeah, sure. Dunkerque offers something no other ship in the game offers so far. For Fun Factor: Mouse: I would pick her up for this alone. Her guns are a joy to use -- so much so that I am willing to forgive a whole lot of her flaws. I'll be putting a lot of play time into the Dunkerque. Lert: Maybe. She can be rewarding if you treat her right, but is very unforgiving of mistakes. In defense of the base, this badly damaged Dunkerque pursues and destroys an enemy Myoko-class cruiser. While the IJN warship is faster than the Dunkerque in a straight line, she made the mistake of turning to launch torpedoes which allowed the French ship to keep within close range and finish her with two salvos of her 330mm rifles. Outfitting your Dunkerque Recommended Modules There's thankfully few surprises here. It's an absolute necessity that you equip Main Armaments Modification 1. You need to do everything you can to prop up your main battery. If you lose even one, you're in very rough shape. Take Aiming Systems Modification 1 for your second slot. None of the others are worthwhile. For your third option, I take Damage Control System Modification 1. I keep hoping they'll make these choices more interesting for Battleships, but until they do, this module is the only one worthwhile. And for your fourth option, you have a choice. I would strongly recommend Damage Control System Modification 2 to reduce the amount of time a fire burns. You can opt to take Steering Gears Modification 2 to reduce her rudder shift time from 14.0s down to 11.2s. Recommended Consumables As a Battleship, taking a premium Damage Control Party is always a sound investment. This reduces her reset timer to 80s from 120s which can be the difference between life and death when fires and flooding begin stacking. You can expect a lot of pressure from aircraft attacks, especially when facing higher tiered CVs so proper use of this consumable to mitigate damage is imperative. There's less need to take a premium version of her Repair Party. I usually favour doing so with my Battleships for the shorter reset timer (80s from 120s). The extra charge is nice but often not needed. For your third slot, you have the choice on which to take. Both are rather good options. Her Catapult Fighter helps with her AA defense. They also have a long air-time which can help with spotting incoming torpedoes. Alternatively, her Spotter Aircraft plays to the strengths of her main battery and it's unlikely you will ever play a game without an opportunity for very long range shots. Recommended Captain Skills The Dunkerque uses a fairly standard set of Battleship skills for her tier. The first skill I would grab for the Dunkerque is Basics of Survivability. Your secondaries are poorly placed and your AA power is overall lacking to make Basic Fire Training a first choice, but it's decent enough for a follow-up. For your second skill, take Expert Marksman. This will reduce the time it takes your guns to rotate 180' from 36s down to 31.6s. At tier three, there's always the debate. Superintendent gives your Repair Party an extra charge. I would only take this if you're good at disengaging with the Dunkerque to give yourself time to use all of the charges. Vigilance is very handy for helping spot torpedoes, especially with her poor handling where every second counts. Lastly, High Alert is probably your best choice to give you a faster reload on your Damage Control Party. At tier 4, Advanced Fire Training should be considered the best choice. Your AA guns and secondaries will reach out to 6.2km (with Aiming Systems Mod 1). This can set you up to take Manual Fire Control for AA Armament and make her dual purpose 130s really put the hurt on attack craft and maybe bluff your way out of being picked on. This will preclude you from being able to take a tier 5 skill, however. At tier 5, Jack of All Trades is your best choice. This reduces the reset timer on all of your consumables which is helpful. Concealment Expert looks nice, but combined with camouflage this will only reduce your surface detection range to 14.1km which is better but not really amazing.
  4. LittleWhiteMouse

    Premium Ship Review - Flandre

    The following is a review of Flandre, the tier VIII French Alsace-class battleship. This ship has been kindly provided to me by Wargaming for review purposes -- I did not have to pay for access to this ship. To the best of my knowledge, the statistics discussed in this review are current as of patch 0.10.2. In the back of my mind, I always knew that World of Warships would eventually reach a state where the lines became bloated as those in her sister-game, World of Tanks. The sheer volume of choice is daunting, overwhelming even. Flandre is that tipping point for me; that moment where tackling World of Warships content has personally gotten to the point where it feels like there's just so much stuff out there. Flandre is the third premium tier VIII French battleship. There are now as many French battleships at this tier as there are British battleships at tier VII. Imagine being a new player trying to decide between the three as your first premium purchase, never mind the other dozen premium battleships she competes with directly. Wargaming appears to be trying to simplify matters. There's no gimmicks to know with Flandre. There's no additional oddities to obfuscate her performance. She is exactly what is described on the tin: a nine 380mm-gun armed battleship with a very traditional turret layout. Forget all of the gunnery and armour weirdness of Champagne. Ignore Gascogne's special consumables and weird placement of her quadruple turrets. Flandre is an easy-to-digest, simple battleship with predictable levels of performance. So with everything getting more complicated, Flandre is a breath of fresh-air. That or she's incredibly boring. Your mileage may vary. Summary: A tier VIII Alsace-class battleship with nine 380mm guns instead of twelve and crappy consumables. PROS Enormous hit point pool for a tier VIII battleship at 75,400hp. Thick citadel protection with upwards of 500mm worth of armour. Excellent torpedo damage reduction of 44%. Comfortable gun handling with a 5º/s rotation rate. Heavy secondary battery with a 7.6km base range. Fast for a tier VIII battleship with a top speed of 33.5kts. Heavy DPS in her long-range AA batteries, good for providing friendly support. CONS Uncomfortably slow 33 second reload on her main battery. Limited overmatch potential on her 380mm guns. Poor forward firing angles on her main battery. Most of her secondaries are incapable of directly damaging her opponents. Large turning circle radius of 910m. Limited consumables with no Engine Boost and one fewer charge of Repair Party. Overview Skill Floor: Simple / CASUAL / Challenging / Difficult Skill Ceiling: Low / Moderate / HIGH / Extreme Flandre is pretty basic as far as battleships come. She doesn't earn a Simple rating for the following reasons: She doesn't have a universal ammunition type. You have to know when to use AP and when to use HE and against which targets. She's still vulnerable to citadel hits, unlike some battleships I could mention. So you need to be aware of angling and making sure you're not accidentally flashing your sides to something halfway across the map. This is a ship built for kiting, not for head-on fights. She can do the latter, but she's much better when used in the former role. Her short range puts her in harms way way too easily. And that's it, really. Flandre is a modest ride for more veteran players with her speed easily being her best asset. It's not all sunshine and roses, though. Her lack of reach makes taking up a central position and capitalizing on those fire lanes a bit of a no-go. Similarly, her limited consumables provides less flexibility than other French battleships. She does really kite well, though, which is a skill onto itself that pays off, but instances where you can make best use of that are situational. Still, she does offer a variety of game play options, up to and including taking her into a brawl. So, there's more to know than the basics and it's nice when a ship can grow with your skill set. Options I'm going to do something weird here and advocate for a secondary build as an alternative to the more standard emphasis on main battery firepower and fire prevention builds. Please note that this is a meme-build, way-way-WAY sub-optimal for any kind of PVP battle. Like, it's embarrassing how badly a secondary build ranks up to the more common survivability + sniping build. However, it's fun. I recognize that a lot of my readers enjoy PVE modes and secondary builds certainly have a lot more functionality there where the optimization rules change considerably. Consumables Flandre is absolutely bare-bones when it comes to her low-quality consumables. Her Damage Control Party is normal at least with a 15 second active period and 80 second reset timer. It has unlimited charges, as you would expect. Her Repair Party, on the other hand, comes with three charges instead of the usual four. The rest is as expected, queuing 10% of citadel damage, 50% of penetration damage and 100% of everything else. It will heal back up to 14% of her health over 28 seconds and it has an 80 second reset timer. And that's it. Flandre gets no other consumables and her Repair Party is crappy. Looooser. ♫ Upgrades You want to build your ship for fire-mitigation while buffing your main battery firepower where ever possible. To this end: Start with Main Armaments Modification 1. Damage Control System Modification 1 is the only worthwhile choice in slot two. Aiming Systems Modification 1 is optimal in slot three and by a significant margin. HOWEVER, for those who like inefficient meme-builds (or simply those who prefer PVE-modes to PVP), then you can get away with Secondary Battery Modification 1. This is the start of that aforementioned secondary build I mentioned earlier and I will go into more detail about its strengths and weaknesses in the Firepower section below. Damage Control System Modification 2 is best in slot four. And Concealment Modification 1 remains optimal for just about everyone in slot five. No big surprises there. Commander Skills Oh yeah, it's time to re-use a graphic! ♪ Wuh-BAAAYUM! ♫ Circles are must haves with squares as alternates to your preference. Until Wargaming gets around to fixing things, Dead Eye is optimal but you do you, cupcake. If you want to try your hand at playing a secondary build, it's going to look something like this: For the yellow circles, pick the skill that best suits your playstyle, but only one at each tier. Then take the red circles and finally gobble up the last three in blue squares. The idea here is that you can eschew worrying about concealment. You accept that you're not going to live very long, so buffing the number of Repair Party charges you have access to doesn't really matter. You will be set on fire, probably repeatedly, so fire prevention and mitigation skills still have some value. But you're going full-bore on the secondaring buffing skills. You can swap out the fire mitigation skills for Emergency Repair Expert and Adrenaline Rush if you're feeling metal, though. Just appreciate that you will die screaming and one fire. Your secondaries will be rockin', though. Note that Inertial Fuse for HE Shells isn't 100% necessary but it comes highly recommended for the sake of allowing her 100mm secondaries to have a chance of directly damaging a limited number of targets. However taking it thoroughly neuters her ability to set blazes -- something her secondaries do stupidly well. Camouflage Flandre comes with Type 10 Camouflage, providing the usual bonuses for a tier VIII battleship: -3% surface detection +4% increased dispersion of enemy shells. -10% to post-battle service costs. +50% experience earned. Her alternative palette can be unlocked through completing the "Legion of Honor" collection. Firepower Main Battery: Nine 380mm guns in 3x3 turrets in an A-B-X superfiring configuration. Secondary Battery: Nine 152mm guns in 3x3 turrets mounted on the centreline with one superfiring over B-turret and two superfiring over X-turret and twenty-eight (!) 100mm guns in 14x2 turrets in a superfiring stair arrangement with seven turrets per side amidships. Ouch. Why are we spending money on this? You know your HE DPM is bad when ROMA outdoes you. Something smells fowl Why does Flandre have a 33 second reload with only nine 380mm guns? There's something ducky going on here. The duckyness stems from Flandre's Alsace-grade durability. She has a lot of hit points. She has good (but not amazing) citadel protection. Ergo, with a little tweak to her sigma, Wargaming felt justified in throttling her reload time. It's even worse than Alsace's own 32 second reload and Flandre does not get access to Alsace's Main Battery Modification 3 upgrade to cut that down to the much more manageable 28.2 seconds. Combine this with the (relatively) small calibre of Flandre's shells and her DPM stinks like monkey-butts. Keep in mind, this is at a tier where the other 380mm armed battleships flirt with 25 and 26 second reloads with eight or nine guns. Let's go through the list; Vittorio Veneto: Nine 381mm guns with a 34 second reload. Shut up, she gets SAP. Richelieu: Eight 380mm guns with a 30 second reload. Roma & AL Littorio: Nine 381mm guns with a 30 second reload. Gascogne: Eight 380mm guns with a 28 second reload. Bismarck & Tirpitz: Eight 380mm guns with a 26 second reload. Vanguard: Eight 381mm guns with a 25 second reload. Famous & Historical Monarch: Nine 381mm guns with a 25 (!) second reload. Obviously this means Famous & Historical Monarch's firepower is grossly overpowered. No wonder she was selected to be the basis of a new premium. Now where was I? Oh, right! As of late, Wargaming seems addicted to shackling battleships with reloads greater than thirty seconds. The last two battleship lines, the Italian and American standard-type battleships all struggle with appalling reloads and Flandre fits right in with this mould. It is not a shape I like. Usually there's a reason for these longer reloads and as stated earlier, Flandre's slacking on her rate of fire is supposed to be compensated for by her chunky hit point pool and armour. Is that worth it? Well, spoiler alert: Not for me. It's not that the extra durability isn't potent in its own right (and more on that later), it's that 380mm guns are already feeling a bit small in calibre by tier VIII. So Flandre was already facing some challenges right out the gates. But it gets worse when you start comparing her to the other French battleships at her tier. Let's ignore Champagne as she is very much her own beast. Richelieu's guns are easier to use with their all bow-mount layout. Gascogne has improved sigma over Flandre. On top of firing more quickly, both of these ships out-range Flandre to a significant degree. Flandre's 20km reach cannot be modified. She lacks access to a Spotter Aircraft (something both Richelieu and Gascogne enjoy) and it's infuriating how often Flandre's guns feel just out of reach, especially in the opening moments of a match when a friendly carrier might be spotting a juicy broadside. Thus the combination of the poor reload and reduced range makes Flandre's guns less able to take advantage of opportunities than the other French battleships. She may otherwise clone their ballistics and (good) penetration but she's much more limited in carry potential, at least firepower wise. Flandre's guns are ... well, they're not good, let's be honest. Nine 380mm guns with wonky French dispersion and a shoddy reload? That ducks. I don't care how tough you are. Oh, French dispersion, you so silly. This is a standard dispersion test with 180 AP shells fired at a distance of 15km at a stationary Fuso bot. Shots are coming in from right to left. The Fuso has no camouflage, upgrades or skills that disrupt incoming shell fire. Flandre was using Aiming Systems Modification 1 but not Dead Eye. Flandre's fire arcs are much better suited to kiting than going on the attack. If you can fire all three guns forward, your opponent's return fire can punch into your belt. Flandre's AP penetration is decent compared to the other 380mm/381mm guns at her tier. I'd make a bigger deal about her AP penetration but she's competing with 406mm and 410mm AP rounds against which she doesn't look so favourable. Approximate AP penetration data pulled from wowsft.com The Death of Secondary Specializations Once upon a time, many years ago, there was one (and only one) defining feature that dictated if a ship had good secondaries or not: Range. In our naivety in the long-long ago, in the before-times, if a battleship had 4.5km or (gasp!) 5km secondaries, they were good. So long as you had enough guns and your citadel wasn't hiked up to your nipples, you should seriously consider buffing them. This is why we had secondary-spec'd Nagato-class battleships wandering around (5km secondaries, my gawd!) back in 2015 and early 2016. Much has changed since then. We have had two commander-skill reworks, one major and a couple of minor upgrade reworks, the addition of new signals, changes made to secondary ammunition, changes made to secondary range and changes made to secondary accuracy besides. What's more, we have a better understanding now of things like penetration, module damage and most-recently, dispersion. Thus, for players, evaluating secondary quality is a much more refined (if complicated) process. Under the old system, Flandre's secondaries look like the sex. Under the new, they have a couple of things going for them but on the whole, they are found wanting. Here's the criteria we look for now and how Flandre stacks up: Range: Flandre's secondaries are long ranged with a 7.6km base reach which can be upgraded up to 11.49km which is very respectable. This is longer ranged than Massachusetts, equal to Bismarck & Tirpitz and behind Odin's own secondaries. Gun Types: Flandre uses two calibres of gun. The bulk of her secondary armament is made up of quick-firing 100mm guns backed by (much) slower firing 152mm guns. Generally speaking, a homogeneous secondary battery is preferred. It's easier to evaluate for one. For another, it's easier to decide if a given secondary battery is worth investing skills like Inertial Fuse for HE Shells when there's a singular armament. So this is a point against Flandre's secondaries as there are very different needs and performance between the two weapons. DPM: Obviously the bigger the numbers, the better. Flandre's secondaries have the potential to put out monstrous amounts of DPM. But there's a couple of catches... Dispersion: If you can't hit your target, that DPM is going to throttle quickly. Flandre's secondaries are bare bones when it comes to secondary accuracy, having neither the slightly improved German dispersion, nor the much-improved Massachusetts (and British & Japanese large-calibre) secondary dispersion. Boo-urns. Penetration: Next up, those hits don't matter much if they can't inflict damage. The bulk of Flandre's secondary fire has 17mm of HE penetration which isn't enough to directly damage the hulls of same-tier destroyers and makes her patently incapable of damaging same-tier battleships anywhere. Inertial Fuse for HE Shells can correct this somewhat, but..... Fire Chance: ... taking IFHE hurts her fire chance. While Flandre's direct damage potential is in the toilet, her fire setting is some of the best out there. Those 100mm spit out a lot of shells and that again leads to a lot of potential fires-per-minute (again so long as dispersion behaves). Unfortunately, you need to choose between Flandre's secondaries doing direct damage or starting fires if you choose to specialize into them which makes them work at cross purposes. Firing Arcs: Flandre's firing arcs are okay. They're not great with the majority of her fire being aimed towards her broadside (40º off her bow or stern). This doesn't make them the best for taking on an aggressive brawling stance. So even before we get into whether or not secondary commander skill builds are worthwhile, Flandre's secondaries are severely flawed. Stock, they're good at starting fires but that will only really work against enemy battleships. Against destroyers and cruisers, you're not going to stack significant fire damage (if at all, given their short Damage Control Party) and you need to invest into Inertial Fuse for HE Shells if you want to have even a chance to directly hurt most of the enemy vessels you'll be coming across. Because of this, outside of PVE-modes, you're never going to get as much mileage out of Flandre's secondaries to make the skill investment pay off. I supoose the one caveat there is that no one will really be expecting Flandre's secondaries to reach out and slap them at over 11km, so you might be able to catch someone off-guard But the simple fact of the matter is that commander skills cannot band-aid mediocre secondaries they way they used to. The disparity in accuracy is so significant between the old ways and the new that you're just not going to land the hits necessary to make Flandre's secondaries pay off -- especially when compared to a more traditional Dead Eye or survivability build. Summary Flandre's weapon systems are C-grade at best but that's only if I'm feeling generous. I would rather be using Gascogne's or Roma's armaments. What does that tell you? VERDICT: Blech. Durability Hit Points: 75,400 Bow & stern/superstructure/upper-hull/deck: 32mm / 19mm / 32mm / 32mm Maximum Citadel Protection: 50mm anti-torpedo bulge + 350mm belt + 50mm turtleback + 50mm citadel wall. Torpedo Damage Reduction: 44% The insert here shows Flandre's citadel and lower hull armour geometries. The citadel's roof sits between the two 370mm plates and has a 40mm roof. Flandre is a bit of a roller coaster ride when it comes to her protection. Flandre's Repair Party has one fewer charge than most other battleships. That's . Flandre has an enormous hit point pool. That's . All of her structural plate fails to exceed 32mm, making her highly vulnerable to cruiser-calibre HE fire. That's . She has excellent anti-torpedo protection! That's . Her turtleback isn't angled steeply enough to ricochet incoming fire. That's . She has many layers of thick armour protecting her citadel. That's . She doesn't come with a free Frogurt™. That's . Go figure, a given ship has both strengths and weaknesses. How nuanced. Of course, if writing ship reviews for six years has taught me anything, it's that the internet hates nuance. People want their facts delivered in grossly oversimplified sound bites, preferably packaged in memeable formats. So what's the skinny with Flandre? It's not good news on the whole. Yes, she has a lot of health. Yes, she has good torpedo protection. Yes she's got a lot of layered armour protection around her citadel. However, she does not repulse incoming fire well. Angled in, she can bounce AP shells, at least so long as shells don't strike her large superstructure. There's enough weird geometry going on there that she cannot guarantee over-penetrations, even from battleship calibre rounds. The 100mm barbettes of her secondaries are more than capable of fusing even Shikishima's AP shells, so Flandre may end up taking some big, meaty hits that way. Furthermore, she has no hope of stopping an HE farm upon her person. Finally, her modest 20km reach of her main battery guns means that she usually has to place herself within range of cruisers in order to be able to fire back at her opponents, so you're almost constantly at risk of trading fire. And so you're forced to lean hard on that big health pool of her's. Do savour the little victories where you can: Feel good when that combination of her torpedo bulge and belt armour bounces a long-distance AP shell or eats a SAP round. Rejoice that you took almost half damage from that Japanese torpedo that caught you amidships. Be glad when that battleship shell gets trolled successfully by her weird, layered citadel protection. Those are the good moments. But overall, she'll be giving up a lot of health over the course of a match. Despite having more starting hit points than any other tier VIII battleship, the loss of one Repair Party charge drops Flandre down the list in terms of potential health. Still, don't overlook that chunky hit point total. While it does mean that she shrugs off penetration hits better than her peers, HE spamming ships love her for the big damage totals they get from their fires. VERDICT: If I'm in an HE spamming ship, I am totally focus-firing any Flandre I see for easy big-numbers from the ensuing fires. Agility Top Speed: 33.5 knots Turning Radius: 910m 7Rudder Shift Time: 16.6 seconds 4/4 Engine Speed Rate of Turn: 4.2º/s at 25 knots Flandre's only saving grace here is her high-top speed. And that top speed is great, do not mistake me. Her 33.5 knots is downright amazing and barring being run down by smaller ships, Georgia or French battleships, she's fast enough to fully control engagement distances. But this is but one of many failing attributes that her speed must band-aid. Her turning circle radius is atrocious for a tier VIII battleship but her speed allows her to maintain at least a passable rate of rotation in spite of this. Similarly, a higher top speed provides a greater variety of possible velocities at which she can be moving, which in turn can foul up enemy gunnery estimations. Given Flandre's soft outer skin, avoiding incoming fire altogether is really her only recourse for reliably avoiding damage. What disappoints me most here is the lack of an Engine Boost consumable so commonplace on other French battleships (though admittedly not universal). While Flandre's top speed is amazing, Gascogne and Champagne both gave better flexiblity grace of their consumables, on top of being more agile overall. Flandre doesn't have bad agility, but she's definitely the weakest of the four tier VIII French battleships. Flandre has enough speed to get her both into and out of trouble. It's all on how you use it. While Flandre's rate of turn isn't terrible, her turning radius is large. She's spared a worse agility rating thanks to her high top speed. VERDICT: Only passable thanks to her good top speed. Anti-Aircraft Defence Flak Bursts: 6+4 explosions for 1,400 damage per blast at 3.5km to 5.8km. Long Ranged (up to 5.8km): 276.5dps at 75% accuracy Medium Ranged (up to 3.5km): 115.5dps at 75% accuracy Short Ranged (up to 2.5km): 73.5dps at 70% accuracy Flandre has two nice elements going for her when it comes to AA defence: She puts out a ridiculous amount of flak. She has a lot of sustained DPS focused into her long-range batteries. The division of Flandre's sustained AA DPS feels downright German. So much of it is focused within her long range betteries to the deficit of the efficiency of medium and small calibre weapons. Flandre's AA defence is comparable to (but worse than) a stock Alsace layout to put it in perspective, overall coming out about as efficient as Richelieu's. However, the massive weight of fire located in her large-calibre weapons front-loads her damage against incoming aircraft, making them feel more effectove than their numbers might otherwise indicate. This makes Flandre an excellent escort-vessel, able to provide effective, long-range support to allies. This combines with the fearsome number of flak clouds she puts out. Though these are individually less powerful than many of her contemporaries, she puts out so damn many of them. While you're not likely to catch an expert CV with one of them, the sheer volume will foul up more novice players and clobber bots hilariously. Look at all of that long-range AA DPS for Flandre! It's too bad she doesn't follow it up with medium and short-ranged AA DPS. Oh well. Those ships marked with an asterix include reskinned clones that share their AA values. VERDICT: Not bad at all. Flandre is definitely a friendly ship you want to hug if your own AA is a bit lacking. Vision Control Base/Minimum Surface Detection: 16.2km / 12.73km Base/Minimum Air Detection Range: 12.09km / 9.79km Detection Range When Firing in Smoke: 14.93km Maximum Firing Range: 20km There's not too much to go over here. Flandre has decent surface detection for a tier VIII battleship, but it's nothing remarkable. She doesn't bring any bonus detection consumables to the table, nor is she capable of boosting her main battery range. Yup, pretty normal. All you really need to know is her Dead Eye window is pretty comfortable but you're not likely to sneak up on anything. Have a data dump sorted by base surface detection range. Final Evaluation I was going to make a bad joke using John McCrae's famous poem. When Flanders is fielded, you've got to go On the A-line, or the back row To own some face; and with Dead Eye beg RNG and then ask why you get scarce hits upon your foe. Yeah, I think I'll stop there. Flandre! Is she good? Heck to the no, she is not good. Comfy? Yes. Adequate? Sure. Good? No way. Look, Roma is the better boat, no matter how you slice it. She has better protection, better guns, better concealment and better agility. The only thing that sets Flandre apart is her support AA-firepower and her big chunk of starting HP. So in matches where the damage you take comes at you all at once, sure, Flandre might survive where Roma might not. Maybe. Roma's more likely to shrug off the hits in the first place and go undetected. Roma's also better at dodging. So would you throw money at Roma? No? Then Flandre isn't worth it. Even if you stick within French lines, Gascogne is the more interesting vessel. Go back and look over all of those charts and graphs. Look at how Flandre stacks up to Roma and Gascogne. Roma has the additional benefit of not suffering from a commander-skill identity crisis. Though neither ship has secondaries worth upgrading, Flandre and Gascogne might fool you into thinking that they are. And Roma gets a beer-pope-hat. I really don't think I need to say more than that. Mouse out. So cool.
  5. thatbruinskid

    Secondary Alsace Builds?

    Am currently grinding the French BB line, am at tier 7 at the moment, Jean Bart is one of my favorite ships in the game. I'm hyped to get to the Alsace. What's the best secondary build for her? I was thinking something like: PT, PM, AR, BoS/SI, AFT, CE and MFCSA and then secondary range upgrade in slot 3. Should I run BFT over BoS or SI? Or swap out Main Battery Reload in slot 6 for the 20% reload decrease on the secondaries? Should I ignore MFCSA entirely and go for fire prevention instead? Auxiliary Armaments upgrade? LMK what you guys think! Any advice on the best combos would be greatly appreciated. Looking forward to playing Alsace in the near future.
  6. A heavy cruiser project (Project C5A3) designed to rival potential adversaries: new ships of this type that were being built in Germany. The main difference from the previous ships was manifested in the enhancement of the ship's main guns located in triple turrets. WGWiki Meep! Meep! This cruiser really is the Road Runner of Tier VIII cruisers. When I think of the Charles Martel as compared to other Tier VIII cruisers, I see a lot of great potential. When the French cruiser line was first advertised, many noted that the ship had a high citadel and that the wet tissue paper protecting the citadel was insufficient for the ship to survive. Because of this obvious weakness, many recommended that sailing the French would lead to disaster and frustration. I have found that this cruiser does not need to be well armored, because like the Khabarovsk, she can sit at a distance and simply pepper her enemies to death with high explosive shells all the while running and dodging everything they are throwing at her. How to Sail Her: This will likely receive some backlash, but I will make the statement, this cruiser excels in open water. I know counterintuitive to traditional cruiser play. The Martel needs to be moving, constantly, and almost never in reverse, although be used to kiting early and often in the match. A sitting Martel is going to be dead from AP in a few short bursts. You want your cruiser moving in open water, zigging and zagging between 13.5km and 17.5km from your targets. I have found that I am most effective with this cruiser at these ranges, at least until the later portion of the mid-game or even late game when you either need to make a play or you are on mop-up duties. So, is the Charles Martel another Heavy Cruiser designed to spam high explosive shells on a target for shock value after getting in as close as possible? Some would argue yes. I find that the Martel is best suited for shooting early, often and starting with the largest ships available. Now this might seem backwards to those who play cruisers/rely on them and those who feel the job of the cruiser is to sink the destroyers first and foremost. Do not get me wrong, a destroyer inside of 11km is still a viable priority target, but outside of that look to bigger slower moving targets. Let your damage per a minute slowly eat away at the enemy fleet. Unlike the Japanese Cruisers which use stealth to get close and punish, the Martel wants to simply get off the first shot while kiting away. Other cruisers want to deal with DDs, the Martel, wants to deal with/impact the overall health pool of the enemy team. During the early game, that is the first five minutes of the match, the most important thing you can do is, ensure you are not seen until you fire your first salvo, be already turning away before you fire, and don’t take massive damage to early. Try to avoid getting any closer than 14km from a BB during this period because inside of 14km they can and will citadel you. Additionally, unseen cruisers screening for them will likely be 2-4km in front of them and will melt you. The key is to try and do 20-30k early damage, cause some fires, evade, and escape to the mid-game where your ship will really begin to excel. During the mid-game 15 minutes remaining till about 6 minutes remaining OR when the enemy is reduced from 10 to 5 ships remaining, your ship needs to pull its weight. No matter the tier. Here, you need to pound overextended battleships, lighting fires as you go. Once one or two are set and burning, move on to the next target. Keep the fires spreading around the enemy fleet. Here you may even find a use for your torpedoes. I usually use my speed boost to get to a weak flank, and since the enemy is usually pushing at this point, here is where I let the torpedoes fly. This is often done between 13 and 10.5km, as an oncoming ship will more than make up the ground to run into the torpedo before it hits its maximum 9km range. Most importantly, during this time is keeping the guns hot. Always be moving and always keep them shooting as much as possible at something. If not, be moving to an area where they will have that impact. During the late game, that is when the enemy is reduced to less than 5 ships or under six minutes remain, you may have to be a little more aggressive. If that means capping, do it. Whatever it takes. Your speed makes you probably the most flexible cruiser in the game (tier for tier). You may have to risk your ship, at least you know you can still outrun problems. Strengths: Speed/Maneuver: So the base speed with my signal flag is 34.1 knots. With the Speed Boost, I can hit 40.2 knots. Only thing outrunning you at that point is a Russian DD…and let’s be clear, you probably don’t want to be chasing a Khab anyways. This really makes this ship the Road Runner as I suggested above. You can outrun just about every design to hurt you, but if Wyle Coyote ever catches you, it’s going to hurt a lot. If I could give advice to Captains (BB and CA) who are engaged with a Martel, break contact (run away) and don’t waste ammo on one that is over 14km away and actively maneuvering unless there is just no other target available. You will miss most of the time, and this can become a very frustrating ordeal as your decks go up in fire. The exception to that comment is the Zao and Moskva, which with their rail guns, seem to have better success. Also, since you are usually operating from a bit further in the back…things like radar are of little consequence. High Explosive Shells: In my ships current configuration, I have a 19 percent chance to cause a fire with each salvo. Not as good as the Japanese cruisers with their 22 percent, but with a faster rate of fire, it all works out. With a range of 17.6km, you will start hitting enemy battleships early in the match and this is always a great benefit to the team. Most BB captains tend to let a single fire burn. If you are trying to stack damage, I found that by the 16-minute mark remaining, I was often sitting at 25k+ damage and it would just continue to roll. I would average about 12 fires per a game in the Martel, and having an Arsonist or Witherer every few matches was not uncommon. Survivability: Yes, I just said that about a French cruiser. Of all the cruisers that I own at Tier VIII (which is all of them), the Charles Martel has the highest survival rate. Interestingly, because of this, I think I have also benefited from a higher win rate, damage per battle, and overall experience. Something about this ship just clicks, and because of its speed and maneuverability combination, it is not easily killed. Even when I did die, it was often because I was the last ship on the field. This ship has the potential to carry a Captain to the late game, they just need to understand how to sail her. Weaknesses: Armor: Wet tissue paper over an ammo magazine. You will get citadel’d from just about any angle if you take a hit. If not, it will almost certainly be a pen. The key is to keep moving, stay over 14km, and dodge. Taking a pen or over-pen is fine if you are greatly punishing the pursuer in return. Health: You can ill afford to get into a gun duel with a well angled cruiser inside of 12km. They will eat you alive. Even if you win the exchange you are usually reduced to under 25 percent health. The exchange in this manner just is not good, and this is in large part due to the soft armor of the ship. Worst mistakes I have seen and committed myself, was getting to close to a Bismarck or other German BB with secondary’s that melt your hull. Destroyers: This ship can deal massive damage to a DD inside of 10km. That is not the point. The slower reload makes it better suited for hitting larger ships. I have struggled with this ship to take down destroyers. However, in the current meta, with heavy focus on BBs, this shortcoming is easily overcome. Other: The torps have good angles, but do mediocre damage for torpedoes and rarely cause flooding. Lastly, there is only one set, so they are meh, if not a bonus. The armor piercing is solid and I have scored plenty of citadel hits on other cruisers from Tier VI to Tier X, but it is nothing extraordinary and seems standard for a cruiser. The shell arcs are in the middle of the pack and I have adjusted to them. They are not rail guns, but they don’t take 3 minutes to land on a target either. Captain Skills: I took the following skills to complete my French Captain, slowly building them over time. This is the recommended order. Priority Target (1) – Always good to know who is looking at you and how many. Expert Marksmen (2) – Turret traverse was important for me as I was constantly re-angling my ship to avoid incoming fire. Demolition Expert (3) – 2% Fire Chance to hit. Yeah…extremely useful. This skill is critical to maximizing the fire starting on enemy vessels. Concealment Expert (4) – I like stealth. I prefer to get in the first shot. I do not like having the priority target indicator showing 4-8 before I ever open fire with my main battery. Adrenaline Rush (2) – Critical in the mid to late stages of the game. This will increase your rate of fire and just makes your ship a juggernaut of burn to enemy vessels. Advanced Firing Training (4) – I elected to go AA build on my cruiser. I was rarely if ever in torpedo range, and therefore skills like Vigilance were never really needed. In 100 games, I think my ship hit a total of 4 or 5 torpedoes. Basic Firing Training (3) – To help finish the AA build, plus made the secondary batteries a bit meaner. Ship Modules: Main Armaments Modification 1: A must have. The turrets on this cruiser tend to get incapacitated on the regular, (especially the rear turret) as you kite away. This will reduce that just a bit. Aiming Systems Modification 1: Again, I want as many shells to land on the target I am aiming at as possible. While many will shatter, the chance of fire is greatly increased. Engine Boost Modification 1: Four minutes and thirty seconds of speed boost per a charge. Enough said. This also allows you to save captain points and not necessarily invest in Superintendent. You essentially have a charge available for every stage of the game and can be moving at full speed for 13.5 minutes of the match. That is a nice feat. Steering Gears Modification 2: Let’s be clear, your turning shift is not great, this gives you a 20 percent reduction and brings your rudder shift down to 7.9 seconds. While not ideal, this combined with your speed should be just enough to get you over the hump. Concealment System Modification 1: This will bring you down to a 10.5km detection range. Not great at Tier VIII for a cruiser, but good enough that you can be sure to get in your first shot instead of waiting for the enemy to give you theirs. Also, the +5 percent to dispersion of enemy shells can really help! Signals: Here is my recommended list of signal flags by priority for this ship; Victor Lima, India X-Ray, Sierra Mike, India Yankee, November Foxtrot, Juliet Charlie, November Echo Setteseven, and Juliet Whiskey Unaone. The first two increase fire damage/chance for flooding, the next speed. Beyond that it is more about ship survivability and managing your health pool by reducing the time a fire will burn, cooldown on consumable, and risk of detonation. The remainder is about improving AA, and chance a torpedo will cause a flood. Of note, I did not use detonation flags and was only detonated one time in 100 matches with the ship. In summation, in the current heavy BB meta, this cruiser is absolutely broken and in my opinion the strongest cruiser at Tier VIII. Its ability to do damage, survive, and avoid a lot of damage make it an ideal cruiser for captains to try out. For me, averaging over 99k damage a game and having a 55 percent survival rate says it all. Now, that said, if the meta returns to a DD or Light Cruiser play, then perhaps you put this ship aside for a while in exchange for something else. As always, I look forward to feedback and constructive criticism/techniques you have found useful when sailing this ship.
  7. The Kléber This is a ship that, when it came out, was pretty broken, as evidenced by the wolfpacks we saw in Clan Battles and KOTS. Then, its concealment was nerfed in 9.0, and many people forgot about it, shoved out of the spotlight, never to return... I know, pretty melodramatic. Anyway, on to the review. Quick Disclaimer: I am only a 54% WR player on NA, so take this all with a huge grain of salt. I do have a 59% WR in Kléber over about ~700 games, but this is meant to be more informative. There will be tips, especially with the captain build at the end, but since there are players like Gaishu with 80%+ WRs don't take this advice over much of anyone else's. Credit: Since I am lazy, I will being used WoWs FT for many of the images, so credit goes to them. Skill Floor: Very Challenging. -DDs in general are a difficult class to play, and playing a smokeless DD with poor torp range with no opportunities to inflect harm-free damage, this is doubly so. Skill Floor: High/Very High -Kleber's unique toolkit has the potential to be devestating in the right hands. CVs however can be a major limiting factor. Sections: -Main Battery -Torpedoes -Defense/Hull Mechanics -Concealment -Agility -AA (ha....just no) -Consumables -Upgrades/Captain Skills -Conclusion Main Battery: Kleber sports 8 139 mm barrels, the highest T10 DD caliber in the game, at least until the German DD split is released. These guns are key to Kléber's playstyle, and as such, a detailed look is required. First, let's take a look at the firing angles of Kléber: As you can see, Kleber has excellent firing arcs. In fact, it has the best gun firing arcs out of all T10 DDs. As LWM has often said, 30 degrees or less constitute excellent arcs. As such, Kleber's unified 24 degree arcs are best in class. This comes in handy in many situtions. For example, when kiting (a very strong position for Kleber, as I will discuss later), Kleber can maintain very heavy angling to a target. While this isn't as important in a DD, who don't have armor to angle shells against for the most part, it can be used to reduce overall damage taken. It also allows Kleber to have a very aggresive angle of attack, particularly when pushing and threatening DDs. Use these to your advantage. Let's look at some general stats for her gunnery: 8 139 mm guns 4x2 turrets 13.6 km range 18 sec turn time 7 sec reload. 2000 HE alpha 10% fire chance 2700 AP alpha Standard ricochet angles (45-60) 23 mm threshold (standard 0.025 fuse) That's quite a lot of data! Here are some DPM numbers: 137,143 HE DPM (stock) 164,046 HE DPM (MBM3 + nerfed BFT) 185,143 AP DPM (stock) 221,463 AP DPM (MBM3 + nerfed BFT) As you can see, Kleber's stock HE DPM is quite pitiful. It has comparable DPM to a stock Shima or a stock Z-52. Not exactly impressive. Main Battery Reload Booster enhances this when needed, of course, and Shimas probably won't build for guns, but still. You won't want to fight any serious gunboats without your reload booster to back you up, so be careful. However, these guns do have some advantages to compensate. For one, the pure alpha is quite impressive. Kleber as both the highest HE and AP alpha strike of any T10 DD, with only Khaba and Marceau coming close. 3-4k HE salvoes against DDs aren't at all uncommon, and 5k AP pen salvoes to chunky BBs (I'm looking at you Vermont) are definitely a factor. It also means that you can push up to finish off a low-health gunboat even with your reload booster, relying on alpha strike to clutch the engagement. Just make sure to land these shells. The second advantage these 139's have is their reach. For starters, these guns have the best stock range of all DDs in the game, at 13.6 KM. This allows Kleber to project her influence a good distance. A component of that is Kleber's ballistics. Here's a chart of 5 T10 DDs: Gearing, Daring, Shima, Kleber, and Khaba (Kleber is in pink): Kleber's ballistics are, again, best in class for a T10 DD, with only Khaba being the tiniest bit faster at close ranges. This allows Kleber to not only harass BBs at extreme ranges, but also nail escaping DDs. With some good aim and a little luck, you can anil dds for 2k HE salvoes even at 9+ km. In fact, using your agility, you can outfight certain gunboats at around 10km, juking their shells but nailing them. In one game (which I sadly don't have recorded), I outfought two Harugumos at around 10-11 km. I had full health, but no reload booster, and they both had like 20k HP. However, I juked most of their shells, and whittled them down. This certainly isn't the norm, but do be aware you can take gunfights without reload booster in certain situtions. That's why it can often be good to hang outside a cap circle, not to contest and get detected, but to nail some DDs that your friendly DD is trying to kill. The final part of Kleber's guns is their outstanding AP penetration. As see on the graph, Kleber has better pen than all DDs at T10, and it's not even particularly close. Khaba, again, is the closest, but even he has roughly 50 mm less pen at most ranges, around only 3/4 of Kleber's pen. The pen is so good, it even rivals many light cruisers. For example: Once you get within about 12 km, Worcester's pen becomes greater, with Mino beating Kleber pen at about 9 km. However, as you can glean from these charts, Kleber's AP penetration is excellent, even outstanding for a destroyer. Combined with your generally shorter engagement ranges than those light cruisers, you can easily citadel many light and superlight cruisers. Most angling will defeat the pen, except at close ranges, but perfect broadsides are very vulnerable. You can citadel Minotaurs at 11-12 km, with their thin armor. Smolensks and Colberts are even worse: those can be citadelled at 13 km with flat broadside. Worcesters are a good amount trickier (and more dangerous), but around 7-8 km will probably be good enough. Closer with Des Moines, as it has 152 mm citadel unlike Worcester's 127 mm, but around 5 km. Here is a general list of cruisers and their ease to citadel: Extremely Easy: -Colbert -Smolensk -Austin (Probably, but it is WIP) Fairly Easy: -Minotaur Average: -Zao (Mostly because of the weird shape) -Worcester -DM Hard -Hindenburg (Actually works better at 10-11 km because of the turtleback, but still difficult) -Nevsky (Layered Armor) -Henri (Spaced Armor) -Moskva (Thick armor, but good results at 3-4 km ranges) Very Hard: -Stalingrad (Thick armor, but easy at very close ranges) -Petro (Thick armor + low freeboard) -Goliath (Thick and spaced, but possible at close ranges) As you can see, a little less than half the T10 cruisers can be citadeled at our above 8 km. Since your detection is 7.8 km when fully rigged, this means that you can get the jump on certain cruisers and citadel them. Another good tactic is to charge smoke cruisers (Smolensk/Mino), detect them, and then kill them. Just be careful because your smoke detect when firing is pretty high at 4.15 km. For the rest, you can't charge them in the open. If they are low hp (like 15k or less) you can aim for the upper belts and then reload boost, but that is less reliable. For some of those, like island campers (DMs and Moskvas) a viable tactic is charge around the island, get their broadside, and citadel, though in that case, torps are probably a better option. As far as Petros go, just don't. Like, don't even try. Their freeboard and thickness make them very difficult to cit. Henri and Goliath however, with their large freeboards are good targets for raw pen damage. Mostly, this comes down to experience. Angling, positioning, and cruiser belt armor knowledge are all key to pulling off a successful ambush on a cruiser. For starting Kleber players, Minos are good because of their general extreme vulnerability to citadels. Just be careful of the super-heal. That about sums up Kleber guns. I will go into more detail in Consumables when I talk about the Main Battery Reload Boost, but keep in mind, good use of your guns (since you are first and foremost a gunboat) is key to doing well in this ship. Torpedoes: Kleber's torpedoes are very interesting, in that they look bad on paper, but are quite useful in reality. Again, let's start with the firing arcs: Like the torpedoes, Kleber has god-tier firing arcs on her torpedoes. This is a great advantage when both yoloing (as you don't have to angle much to use your torps) and kiting (as you can easily dump both sets behind you). Next, let's get some general stats: 4 x 3 550 mm torpedoes 8 km range 18,400 alpha 77 reload time 75 kts of speed 1.8 detection 9.2 sec reaction time Kind of a data dump, but as you can see you can see these torps have 3 main characteristics: 1. They hit hard. 18400 alpha, while not challenging the likes of Japanese torpedoes, handily beats Halland torps, Daring torps, and Grozovoi torps. So, overall, pretty respectable alpha for a T10 warhead. 2. They are speedy. While nothing like Halland's 86 kts missiles, they are close to second otherwise, only beaten by Shima's F3s and Smaland's torps. This is also very useful in a yolo situation, since more speed = less time for the target to react, since they will be spotted anyways. 3. They have crappy range. Seriously, they are easily worst in the tier, with the exception of Khaba, who has even worse ones at 6 km. This is the range you would expect to see on a T6 or 7 DD, not a T10 one. This range is very deceptive, however. While you can only barely stealth torp, you can extend your window of stealth by up to 2 km in certain situations. How? Well, torpedoes have a significent travel time, with Kleber's torps taking almost exactly 40 seconds to complete their 8 km run time. During this time, any enemy that is pushing up torwards you will cover some ground. It's hard to get consistent numbers, since the enemy's angle of attack and speed will vary, but a good estimate is this: An enemy pushing torwards you at a 45 degree angle for sharper will probably cover about 2 km before your torps run out. That means if an enemy (say a Montana) is at 10 km and pushing sharply towards you, and you launch torps at him, they will make it there. This takes some judgement, but again, experience is key. This is probably the best way to make use of the torps; harassing kiting enemies. If you get a flood and they damage con, you can reload boost and set them on fire. The second piece to the torps is the DPM. Not many people realize this, but Kleber has top-tier torp DPM. In fact, it has better stock torp DPM than any other DD at T10 DD, until they build for it. Here is a quick ranking of the top 5 stock torp DPM at T10 (and I threw in Benham cause why not.) 1. Kleber: 172,051 2. Benham: 171,670 3. Shimakaze (12 km): 139,805 4. Gearing (10.5 km): 110,871 5. Khabarovsk (kek): 92,125 Pretty crazy, right? Kleber has the highest theoretical torp DPM of any T10 DD, even beating Benham (though only by a fraction). What does this mean? Well, if you can use those tricks I talked about earlier, you can dump a crazy amount of torps back at the pushing enemy forces. Of course, many of these other ships will build for torps, so you will get beaten, but it is cool to think about. In summary: Kleber's torps serve two solid purposes: They are excellent for yolo situations with strong alpha-per side and excellent arcs, and are also suitable for kiting, with their top-tier reload and, again, good arcs. Just be wary of the range: many a time I set up the perfect torp salvo on an enemy BB, only for him to slightly angle out, and the torps to run out right in front of them. You just have to get used to it, it is part of the Kleber experience. Defense/Hull Mechanics: HP: 21,900 Kleber is certainly one of the most interesting T10 DD hulls. While it has no special armor (so I won't both showing a graphic), it does have some nice features. For one, the health is very competitive. It is beaten only by the Khaba (only by 600 hp) and the Harugumo, as of now, and is of course tied with the Marceau. DDs with less HP but heals, like Grozovoi, Daring, and Halland, do have higher theoretical health, but as I will show, this has less of an impact than you might think. The French DD line in this game has a special satuaration gimmick. Essentially, it means two things: one, the ship saturates much faster than other DDs, and two, its center hull component can (and will) saturate, unlike other DDs, who normally can only saturate their nose and stern. It's difficult to get hard numbers on this, since saturation is depend on where the damage is taken and in what amount, and that varies from game to game. Best summarized, this mechanic allows the Kleber to saturate much quicker, and, since full saturation results in half damage in HE pens, means it can tank a significant more amount of DD fire than you would think. To put it another way, Kleber's fully upgraded health of 25,400 (without Auboyneau) is, in practice, more equivalent to around 30-32k health. This isn't stricly true, as saturation doesn't increase your health and instead decreases damage, but it is a good approximation. This means that you can take gunfights with other DDs at a good amount lower health than other DDs would dare. This is especially useful in the late stages of the game, when you might have to chase down other DDs, and you can count on taking less damage overall. Because of your already high health pool, you are in practicality probably the tankiest T10 DD, with the obvious exception of Khaba (since it has a heal and 50 mm plating). Use this to your advantage, and be aware that saturation shows up as black marks and patterns on your ship's hull in game, eventually making that whole section blackened, so try to keep track of that as the match progresses. A final note: because you have no heal, and no smoke, health management is key to winning games. If you lose too much health at the end, you probably won't be able to yolo that key battleship or cruiser, so try not to lose too much health at the beginning. Having 18k+ health in the last 10 minutes (when it looks like it will be a close match) is a good marker to work torwards. Concealment: Stock Surface Conceal (with camo): 9.58 km Stock Air Conceal (with camo): 5.38 km Upgraded Surface Conceal (with camo): 7.76 km Upgraded Air Conceal (with camo): 4.36 km Kleber's concealment is horrible. The surface concealment is the worst of all T10 DDs, except for Khaba. Additionally, the air conceal is also the worst among all T10 dds, bar none, so carriers are a huge threat (as I discuss in AA). Interestingly, the upgraded conceal, 7.76, is just about the range where you can reliably citadel most light cruisers. Accordingly, you must manage this conceal well. I wouldn't recomment compromising your conceal in any way, like Fearless Brawler, sinceconceal gives you a tiny range within which your torps have your range but you are not detected. Personally, I wouldn't want to take that opportunity away, but it is personal choice. I won't go on too much, just to add that this large conceal precludes you from taking caps too early. Unless you know for sure their is no DD nearby, I would stay out of caps until the mid-late game, when hopefully the cruisers have been thinned out. This is definitely Kleber's weakest point, so managing your conceal is also key to a good game. Agility Base Speed: 44 kts +Speed Flag: 46.2 kts Turning Radius: 740 m Rudder Shift: 4.8 sec On the flip side, Kleber's agility is another strong point. While the turning circle is a little on the large side, and the rudder shift isn't great, those are more than compensated by the outstanding 44 kts speed. Additionally, Kleber has the 20% French engine boost, meaning with the flag and your boost active, you can break 55 kts. Except for Yolo Emilio, you are the fastest ship in the game, and functionally the fastest because your boost also lasts for an excellent 3 minutes, compared to the standard 2 minute boost. This also means that you can juke shells quite effectively. You can also outrun CV torps (except some German and Japanese ones upgraded). This speed is one of your greatest strengths. Another bonus is that you can run down dds very effectively. A good choice of prey for a Kleber player is a Halland. With only 6 km detect, quite slow speed, and no smoke, Halland is very vulnerable to a good Kleber player. If you catch a Halland, they can't run and can't hide, as the saying goes. Other slow DDs, like Gearings, are also vulnerable. Another strength is for yoloes. You can come racing around the corner of an island in the blink of an eye, and with your fantastic yolo torps, this turns Kleber into a god-tier yolo machine. This speed can get you in trouble though, with your high conceal, so be careful AA: Just no. Kleber has the horrible distinction of being the only T10 DD of having a worse AA range than air conceal, at a pitiful 3.8 km range. You also have 0 flak puffs. Your dps (210 stock) isn't that bad, but overall, your AA is trash. Combined with your crappy air conceal and lack of smoke, your are exceedingly vulnerable to CVs of all types. As much as I hate to say it, staying back and grouping up for the first few minutes when a CV is in the game is not a bad idea. While you would like to scout, trust me from experience, CVs will focus you relentlessly. This your critical downside. Be always aware of it Consumables: Damage Con: (5 s active period, 40 sec cooldown). Standard damage con. Nothing special Main Battery Reload Booster: (15 sec active period, 100 sec cooldown) - 4 charges. This is a key part of Kleber's ambush style. This doubles your dpm for the 15 second active period. In makes both your HE and APM DPM top of the bunch, with your HE DPM reaching over 270k stock, and close to 330k fully upgraded. This allows you to either shred a DD or brutalize a broadside cruiser. Strategic use of this consumable is key, but don't always be hasty to use it. While I very rarely run out in a match, the cooldown is limiting. For example, if you pop it right when a DD is spotted, and then it goes dark a second later, you just wasted it. A good tip is keep track of who is spotting who. If the DD is spotted by a radar, you probably should go ahead and use your consumable. If, however, they just used smoke, I would hold off. Just be aware, a wasted consumable means over 1 1/2 minutes till your next consumable is ready. Engine Boost: (180 sec active period, 90 sec reload time) - 3 charges. This is also key. A 20% boost in speed is huge, and it also provides a sizable boost in acceleration/deceleration. This can be quite useful for speed-juking. Because of the long-duration of this consumable, it can be used much more freely. However, I would want at least one of these consumables left for the end game when needed, as it is important for those all-too-fun yolos. Upgrades/Captain Skills: I'm going to start with the upgrades, which for me are pretty straightforward: Slot 1: MAM1: Pretty obvious, you want to protect your all important guns and torps. The magazine mod is an option, but you can always run Juliet Charlies instead. Slot 2: EBM1: You want to boost that speed boost duration. This makes it go from 180 secs to 234 secs, a not huge but useful increase. If you don't have the special upgrade, Engine Room Protection is the default choice. Slot 3: MBM2: Kleber's turrets are quite slow, at 18 sec for 180. Your dispersion is already pretty good (it's a DD), so I probably wouldn't take Aiming Systems. The torp tubes mod is nice for the extra speed, but having the fast turning turrets is useful. Slot 4: PM1: Your rudder shift is already pretty good, so their isn't much reason to take that. The accel, however, it useful for speed juking, a quite effective tactic combined with your Engine Boost. Slot 5: CSM1: Pretty obvious. Still a very strong upgrade, not really any other good options. Slot 6: MBM3: Your guns are your strong point, you want to make them batter. While range is an option, as I discuss in Captain Skills, I generally don't upgrade range on Kleber. Finally, its time for captain skills. This is my current build, minus Gun Feeder (Expert Loader), as my captain is currently only 20 points: First 10 points: -Grease the Gears: None of the other 1 points skills are as good, and that extra turret traverse is quite nice. -Last Stand: Always will be a key skill, never a bad choice on DDs. -Survivability Expert: More HP is always nice, especially on a DD like Kleber where HP conservation is so key. -Concealment Expert: A very powerful skill. Even on gunboats like Kleber, concealment and the spacing opportunities it provides are always useful. Next 8 points: -Adreneline Rush: More reload is always better. Since you will often be on lower health near the end of the match, you can get some super filthy DPM at the end of the match. With a full gun build and at 80% health, you have the same burst DPM as a Worcester when reload booster is active. Like I said, super filthy in the right situation. -Main Battery and AA Specialist: Basically a nerfed BFT. Even with the nerf, more reload for no penalty at all is useful on Kleber. The 10% AA boost is also nice to have on a ship with so bad AA already. -Priorty Target: Even with the point increase, this skill is still very useful. When you are on a flank and farming BBs, it is useful to know who is aiming at you, as it can give you an idea if a DD is nearby. Final 3 points (These are more flexible, I think these skills are less useful and more interchangable): -Gun Feeder: With your slow reload, if a cruiser pops up broadside, I find it pretty useful. More useful than you would think for a DD. -Consumables Specialist: Just reduces your Reload Booster cooldown from 100 to 90 seconds. While minor, because of how dependent Kleber is on the Reload Booster for killing DDs and Cruisers, this skill is somewhat useful -Preventative Maintnence: While 30% is minor, DD modules are very vulnerable, so this is actually a nice skill to have. Other Options Here are some 4 point skills that I think are decent but I personally don't take: Main Battery and AA Expert: Just AFT. While definitely viable for long-range spammy builds, I honestly find 13.6 km to be more than enough most of the time. Again, certainly viable, but not as useful. Radio Location: RPF. I tried this before, and while I think it is viable, it is less useful. This is honestly better on torp DDs, where you need to be aware of gunboats. Kleber can 1v1 pretty much any DD if played well, so I don't use it. Just personal opinion of course. Fearless Brawler: 10% reload, like i've said, is nice. More DPM is always great. However, it is 4 points, and you also lose 5% conceal, driving your conceal to be above 8 km. Like I said before, there is nice synergy between the 7.8 conceal and the 8 km torps/citadel potential on light cruisers. Conclusion: Well, I hope this 59% WR Kleber review/guide was helpful. I don't really post much on the forums, so this is my first major post of any length. I'd love some feedback, so any you have is helpful. P.S. While the standard the permacamo for 5k doubloons is nice, the French Navy one they added a year or so ago is pretty snazzy. Good luck captains, and make the Kléber proud!
  8. DISCLAIMER: THIS STORY TAKES PLACE IN AN ALTERNATE UNIVERSE; ONE WE ARE GLAD WE DON'T LIVE IN. A complete analysis on the sinking of the Bismarck(British Version) We are rather unclear about the events during and after the sinking of the Bismarck. This is the best explanation we can offer. At around that day the Bismarck sank or something, the royal navy dispatched HMS Rodney and HMS Ark Royal. Now this was probably a good decision, as Ark Royal was probably one of the most emotionally secure ships in the entire RN and wouldn't fall for Bismarck's confidence-undermining techniques. Rodney's attitude was, on the other hand, slightly troubling... but it was all a ruse to get Bismarck off guard. (Or so claims meta-academic epidemiology) Anyways, the Bismarck's rudder was hit earlier by velociraptors. After that, the captain of the Ark Royal decided to send torpedo rocs to destroy the Bismarck once and for all. On 8:14 (BTW 60% of the statistics in here are made up) in the morning, the torpedo rocs lifted off and began attacking the Bismarck. For some reason, the resilient gruyere the torpedo protection was made of was actually swiss, and the torpedoes easily blowed a hole in the side of the Bismarck. The ship capsized, and yet the Admiral was nowhere to be seen. Later, both Admiral Lutjens and the ship Bismarck were rescued onto the HMS Rodney, then transferred to the Ark Royal. The two ships apparently shared a piece of gruyere cheese armor and quickly build a relationship, then transferred back to England after the sinking of the Ark Royal. Epilogue: Ark Royal and Bismarck Are on an unknown area of the British Titan colonies under the witness protection program, in a scandal involving the HMS Prince of Turtles (Hey we couldn't come up with better names so don't judge)'s Phaser mounts, which were later discovered on a french battlecruiser. War almost erupted, until France threatened to activate Vacuum Decay if Britain declared war.
  9. I thought the fun won't extend for a few days... But then these happened. First, a 30-second video clip of something I don't get to do often up close—search and destroy an aircraft carrier! And this one, a Kraken and a Dreadnought on a very squishy Tier VIII battleship. Thoroughly enjoyed Champagne these past few days.
  10. Fast, accurate, with just 6 main guns and thin armor. I had enough fun with her in Co-op, so I decided to step out of the comfort zone to see what I can do with her in the real world. I think she's finely balanced. AP is superb, but only six guns, with long reload times; however HE is nice. Victory or defeat, I like her.
  11. French Ships I’d like to see added into WOWS in the future, and why… Duquesne (1943) Why should it be added? The Duquesne class was an enlarged version of the successfully designed Duguay-Trouin light cruiser. With the development of a superior 203mm gun, this class was designed to maintain the speed of 34 knots set by the Duguay-Trouin class, but carried 8x 203mm guns mounted in 4x twin turret mounts. Similar to the Duguay-Trouin class, it also carried 2x sets of triple turret torpedoe mounts, with one mount located on each side of the ship. Summed up, this is a enlarged version of the Duguay-Trouin light cruiser with 203mm guns that could offer an alternative style of play at Tier 5. Dupleix (1937) Why should it be added? Derived from the Duquesne class cruisers, these were meant to be fast support cruisers that traveled at 32 knots, and armed with 8x 203mm guns set in 4x twin turret mounts. They also came with a set of 2x triple turret torpedo launchers, one mount on each side of the ship. Summed up, the Dupleix is a faster, smaller, and slightly less armored version of the Algerie class ship that could be an alternative style of play at Tier 6. Lorraine (1943) Why should it be added? The Lorraine is a Bretagne class dreadnought that was heavily modernized in 1943 compared to its two sister ships. The modernized Lorraine included removing the aircraft facilities and installing a large number of anti-aircraft guns, including eight 75 mm guns, fourteen 40 mm guns, and twenty-five 20 mm guns. Modern radar equipment similarly found on US and British Ships was also installed on the ship. Summed up, the Lorraine underwent the same transformation that the USS Texas did, but a little further in some areas. Coupled with its unique radar equipment, and being modernized with numerous amounts of heavy AA guns, this ship could be especially interesting as a Tier 6 alternative since both the Dunkerque and the Normandie are not specifically known for their radar or AA capabilities. Commandant Teste (1929) Why should it be added? One of the biggest seaplane tenders ever built. It was also the largest seaplane tender in Europe during WW2. She had carrying capacity of 26 aircraft and was equipped with 4 catapults. Her aircraft mainly consisted of the large Loire 130 flying boat Torpedo Bombers. Fighters were never provided to the ship, although the Loire 210 floatplane was designed specifically for the role. Summed up, the Commandant Teste could start as the Tier 4 carrier for the French Carrier Tech tree. Béarn (1920) Why should it be added? The Bearn was the first converted aircraft carrier for the French navy which was completed using the hull of a Normandie Class Battleship. After successful tests of the Commandant Teste, the French Navy was interested in a more “standard” carrier design to further develop naval aviation. She carried a complement of 32 aircraft. While never truly tested in battle, she did take part in the hunt for the famous Admiral Graf Spee armored cruiser. Summed up, she could go at Tier 6 for the French Carrier Tech Tree. Joffre (1940) Why should it be added? Joffre was the first carrier designed from the keep up for the French Navy. Unlike the Bearn, this newer fleet carrier offered greater capabilities than its predecessor, by rectifying the deficiencies of the Bearn. However, Joffre was still of limited capacity with its aircraft facilities only amounting to carrier a complementary of 40 aircraft. Summed up, The Joffre would make a logical choice to go at Tier 8 for the French Aircraft Tech tree. Arromanches (1951) Why should it be added? Arromanches (R95) was an aircraft carrier of the French Navy, which served from 1946 to 1974. She was previously HMS Colossus (15) of the Royal Navy. She was the name-ship of the Colossus class of light carriers. She was commissioned in 1944, but did not see any action in World War II. She served with the British Pacific Fleet in 1945–46, as an aircraft transport and repatriation ship. In 1946, she was loaned to the French Navy, and renamed Arromanches; she was bought by the French in 1951. In 1957–58 Arromanches was modified for anti-submarine warfare, including operation of Breguet Alizé ASW aircraft. Summed up, the Arromanches could easily go into the Tier 10 slot for the French Carrier Tech tree since it was constructed and operated in a similar era to the USS Midway for the American Carrier Tech tree. Redoutable-class (1930) Why should it be added? One of the first generations of submarines for the French Navy. The Redoutable-class submarines were a group of 31 submarines built between 1924 and 1937 for the French Navy. Most of the class saw service during the Second World War. The class is also known in French as the Classe 1 500 tonnes, and they were designated as "First Class submarines", or "large submarine cruisers". Summed up, this could be the Tier 6 French Submarine Tech Tree starting submarine. Circé class (1927) Why should it be added? The Circé-class submarines were a sub-class of the 600 Series of submarines built for the French Navy prior to World War II. One of the interesting aspects of the 600 series was that it contained two, midship torpedoes that were fitted in external, trainable mounts. These external torpedoes were typically reloaded when back in port. Summed up, this could be the Tier 8 French Submarine Tech Tree submarine. Saphir-class (1928) Why should it be added? The Saphir-class submarines were a class of six submarines built in France between 1926 and 1935 for the French Navy. Most saw action during World War II for the Vichy French Navy or the Free French Naval Forces. The Saphir-class submarines were constructed to be able to launch torpedoes and lay mines without surfacing. Summed up, this could be the Tier 10 French Submarine Tech Tree submarine. Surcouf-class (1935) Why should it be added? Surcouf was the largest French cruiser submarine. She served in both the French Navy and the Free French Naval Forces during the Second World War. She was the largest submarine built until surpassed by the first Japanese I-400-class submarine in 1943. Surcouf was designed as an "underwater heavy cruiser", intended to seek and engage in surface combat. For reconnaissance purposes, the boat carried a Besson MB.411 observation floatplane in a hangar built abaft of the conning tower. However, the floatplane was also mainly used for gun calibration purposes. Summed up, this could be a premium ship at Tier 10 in the form of coal, steel, research points, or cash.
  12. CaptainZade_NA

    French Battleship Accuracy

    So how are the high tier French battleships' accuracy like? I heard from someone that Republique has 2.0 sigma but horrible horizontal dispersion that makes it perform better on broadsides? What does those mean and is the Richelieu and Alsace's accuracy make them reliant on broadsides?
  13. Updated November 7th, 2018 Jean Bart is an upgraded Richelieu-class battleship with improved anti-aircraft firepower and equipped with the Main Battery Reload Booster consumable. Unassuming at first glance, she is overpowered in the right situation. Jean Bart annihilates opponents that make mistakes like few other warships can. When capitalizing on these situations, she is without equal. Jean Bart punches much harder than her smaller-caliber battleship guns would suggest. This ship was kindly provided to me by Wargaming. Please be aware that there are some differences to this ship as of the original publication date. To the best of my knowledge, these stats are accurate as of November 7th, 2018 and represent the release version of the ship. Jean Bart has been made available for 228,000 Coal in the Arsenal as well as being sold directly in the premium shop. PROS Main Battery Reload Booster gives her the ability to brutally punish ships that make mistakes within her line of fire, be it with repeated citadel hits or stacking fires. Entire battery is bow-mounted, making it easy to maximize her firepower on the attack. Heavy secondary gun battery with a fast rate of fire from her 100mm guns. Excellent anti-aircraft firepower -- some of the best found on battleships in the game. Good overall agility for a tier IX battleship. CONS Tiny hit point pool for a tier 9 battleship at 69,000hp. Exceedingly vulnerable to light cruiser-caliber HE spam. Armed with only eight 380mm guns with low damage output. Unable to overmatch the extremities of tier VIII+ German and American heavy cruisers. Majority of her secondaries are incapable of dealing direct damage to most targets. Overview Skill Floor: Simple / Casual / Challenging / Difficult Skill Ceiling: Low / Moderate / High / Extreme Jean Bart is an easy battleship to play and quite forgiving. If her guns were of a larger caliber, I'd consider her skill floor to merely be 'Simple' As it is, players must have working knowledge of which ships her AP shells can overmatch and which they cannot which forces players to think ahead with their ammunition choices. As easy as Jean Bart is to slip on, she scales very well with player skill. Few battleships reward careful target selection and ammunition choice like Jean Bart. This is a ship where daring plays and proper consumable use make all the difference. Jean Bart feels very much overpowered in the right hands yet provide only a middling performance to the uninitiated. – One of, if not the worst at its tier. This is a pronounced weakness. – Middle of the pack at its tier. Not terrible, but not terribly good either. – Has a significant advantage over her tier mates. A solid, competitive performer. – No other ship at its tier does this as well as this ship. Musashi outperforms Jean Bart firepower wise, giving the French battleship a rating. Jean Bart has a low hit point total like HMS Lion but lacks her improved Repair Party consumable. She has a defense. Jean Bart has the agility and anti-aircraft firepower at her tier. Her concealment is only . Options Jean Bart doesn't offer much in the way of surprises. While there is room for some customization, she's fairly predictable. Her big gimmick is access to the Main Battery Reload Booster consumable. Consumables Jean Bart uses a standard French Damage Control Party. This has a 15s active time and a 120s / 80s reset timer. She has unlimited charges. Her Repair Party is also standard for a French battleship and begins with 3 charges. She heals back up to 14% of her health over 28s with a 120s / 80s reset timer. She queues up to 50% of penetration damage, 10% of citadel damage and 100% of any other damage type. Jean Bart comes with a Main Battery Reload Booster with 3 charges. This cuts down her main battery reload time by 50% for 20s with a 180s / 120s reset timer. Finally, she has access to the Engine Boost consumable with 2 charges. This increases her speed by 8% for 180s and it resets within 180s / 120s. Upgrades Jean Bart should begin by taking Main Armaments Modification 1 in her first slot. Optimally, take the special upgrade Engine Boost Modification 1 in her second slot. If you do not have access to one, then default to Damage Control System Modification 1. In your third slot, Jean Bart forces a choice on players. Optimally, you should increase the accuracy of your main battery with Aiming Systems Modification 1. However, that's totally boring. If you're feeling MANLY (and stupid), take Secondary Gun Modification 2 to boost your secondary range and show those lolibotes and inferior battleships who their daddy is.But maybe an Aircraft Carrier once touched you in a naughty place. Maybe you're super salty about that. If that's the case, you can always go for AA Guns Modification 2 to increase their range. This will make CV players hate you. And while other players may scoff that your build is sub-optimal, they'll all respect you deep down for making a CV player cry. Things get pretty boring from here on out. Damage Control Modification 2 is optimal in your fourth slot with the amount of HE that's thrown about. Steering Gears Modification 2 is a distant second place in terms of optimization, but if it makes you happy, who are we to judge? Take Concealment Modification 1 for your 5th slot. It's too good compared to the other option. And finally, take Main Battery Modification 3 for your final slot. Camouflage Jean Bart comes with Type 10 Camouflage. This predictably provides: 100% bonus experience gains 20% reduction to maintenance costs 3% reduction in surface detection 4% reduction in enemy accuracy. Firepower Main Battery: Eight 380mm/45 guns in 2x4 turrets in an A-B superfiring configuration. Secondary Battery: Nine 152mm guns in 3x3 turrets facing the rear and twenty-four 100mm guns in 12x2 turrets arranged in superfiring configurations with three facing forward and three facing rear on each side of the ship. Jean Bart has some of the firepower at her tier. For a battleship armed with only eight, bow-mounted 380mm guns and a small-caliber secondary battery, this is a bold claim. However, for much of Jean Bart's development cycle, she was disgustingly overpowered and there were very real concerns about her performance. Wargaming has scaled her firepower back, but I'm not sure they did it to the degree necessary to ensure balance at tier IX. As it stands now, Jean Bart has the ability to punish opponents like no other battleship in the game. Underestimate her at your peril. Jean Bart firing 180 shells, locked onto a stationary enemy Fuso without camouflage at 15km. She has the same horizontal dispersion pattern as German and Italian battleships. French 380mm guns are well known for their high shell velocity and energy retention. While this does assist in preserving penetration power over distance, this does have the side effect of causing many shells to overshoot or undershoot their target. Penetration values courtesy of the World of Warships AP calculator (link provided in the Appendix). Jean Bart (and Alsace) have the worst battleship penetration at tier IX. However, it would be a mistake to call her penetration "bad". She is capable of landing penetrating hits on enemy battleships at all but extreme ranges. Unassuming Armament Jean Bart's main battery uses the same 380mm guns found on the tier IX battleship Alsace and her tier VIII sister ships, Gascogne and Richelieu. These weapons are characterized by their admittedly large dispersion area, high shell velocity and energy retention, good penetration and middling damage. The precision of her shell fire has been tuned to be identical to Gascogne at 1.9 sigma making her gunnery feel comfortable and rewarding careful aim. While the high velocity of her shells and dispersion pattern does lead to the occasional wonky spread of shells, on the whole these weapons behave themselves better than the infamously temperamental weapons found on battleship Roma. 380mm guns already feel long in the tooth by tier VIII, to say nothing for tier IX. Unable to overmatch the bows of German and American heavy cruisers, their performance is often found wanting. Jean Bart compensates for this with having an accelerated reload of 26s. While this may seem impressive at a glance, it is the same reload timer found on the Bismarck-sisters a full tier lower and it's less than Monarch's 25s with nine rifles also at tier VIII. Still, Jean Bart's firepower is superior to these other ships grace simply of her gun arrangement. Having all of her weapons mounted on her bow facilitates their use which, combined with the higher precision of her guns, allows her to output more damage than any of these lower-tiered rivals. Still, she should not be able to compete with the likes of the Iowa-sisters, Lion or Alsace. And yet, she not only competes with them -- she puts them in their place. Jean Bart wins no prizes for her stock DPM values, but that's not where her strength lies. The Dreaded Box o' Gimmicks Wargaming has produced the horror or horrors in Jean Bart by giving her access to the consumable Main Battery Reload Booster. Originally dispensed to the French cruiser line, Jean Bart is the first (and probably not the last) battleship armed with it. Understand that this, more than any other trait, is what makes Jean Bart so formidable. When her consumable is properly managed, Jean Bart is game breaking. When it isn't, she's an up-tiered Richelieu with good AA power. The Main Battery Reload Booster is still new, so let's start with an explanation of how the version found on Jean Bart works. This should hold true for other ships, but in case it gets grandfathered in with nerfs, this will serve as a handy reference. While active, it doubles the speed at which Jean Bart reloads her main battery. It does not halve the time it takes for a shell to be reloaded. This is an important difference. Allow me to show what I mean: I've redone this damn chart nine ten eleven TWELVE FREAKIN' times. The most recent change to this consumable occurred with patch 0.7.10. While the booster is active every second spend reloading counts as two seconds. What the booster does not do is simply halve the reload time -- ie, turning the cycle time down to 13s for any shells being reloaded during the consumable's active period . There's no way to cheat the system and fire an extra shell at a fully halved reload by timing the consumable use carefully. The benefits of Jean Bart's consumable apply immediately and only for the duration that it's active. The benefits of her consumable stack with the gains made from the Main Battery Modification 3 upgrade and the Adrenaline Rush commander skill. The numbers here get truly frightening, with a Jean Bart at 50% health being able to cycle her guns as quickly as every 10s with her consumable active. For an enemy vessel caught within a turn, this is devastating as Jean Bart is capable of putting repeated volleys downrange before they can turn away or make it into cover. And it's here where this unassuming battleship becomes overpowered. Jean Bart's all-forward gun placement makes her arcs feel very comfortable -- at least until you have to start running. Be very careful of unmasking her B-turret when you do. This will open her up to taking some hard hits from over angling. Devastating Strikes & Burninations on Demand The all-forward gun arrangement on Jean Bart means that her guns are almost always going to be at the ready when a target of opportunity arises. Her Main Battery Reload Booster guarantees she'll have the right shells loaded. Moreover, her consumable makes it very likely she'll be able to take two bites of the apple before they're able to correct their mistake. It cannot be understated how disgustingly powerful this consumable is in the right hands. Jean Bart may not have the same raw damage output of her peers over time, but she has all of the tools, between gun arrangement, precision, penetration and reload time to make her guns far more devastating in the short term. This emphasizes a battleship's strengths -- overwhelming alpha strikes. Jean Bart is better equipped to deal them more often than any of her contemporaries. It goes beyond landing AP volleys on exposed broadsides. Jean Bart is just as capable of stacking fires with her HE shells in short order with the use of her consumable. If an enemy battleship blows their Damage Control Party, Jean Bart's fast rate of fire will deliver upwards of 24 shells inside of 33 seconds. Even with the modest (for a battleship) fire chance, Jean Bart can match the Royal Navy for infuriating stacks of blazes. Duly warned be ye, says I. Almost excellent - Except they totally suck Jean Bart's secondaries suck moose-balls. She boasts a similar secondary load out to her sister Gascogne but she has even more 100mm guns. This looks terribly impressive on paper. They have a good range. Her smaller caliber guns have a phenomenal rate of fire of 20rpm which more than pads their uninspiring 5% base fire chance. And, really, that's all their good for -- setting fires. They can only directly damage areas of 16mm of armour or less -- that's not even enough to contest the hull of tier VIII+ destroyers she faces. Taking Inertial Fuse for HE Shells will enable her to the penetrate up to 21mm but that's a damn heavy investment. You can go this manly route if you wish. It's hardly optimal, even if it is hilarious. Jean Bart's armour scheme does not hold up well in a brawl (see below) so this is a heavy gamble. Still, with her Main Battery Reload Booster, she can be a formidable opponent in close quarters if you like to live dangerously. Summary Main battery is unassuming. Secondaries suck unless you invest heavily into them. And opportunist par excellence, Jean Bart can capitalize upon opponent mistakes like no other battleship thanks to her reload consumable. Evaluation: What it would have needed to be : An increase in gun caliber would do it, even without the accompanying increase in shell damage. Jean Bart is contesting Musashi for the top spot. Her guns are that good. Defense Hit Points: 69,000hp Min Bow & Deck Armour: 32mm Maximum Citadel Protection: 32mm torpedo bulge + 330mm belt + 50mm turtleback + 50mm citadel wall. Torpedo Damage Reduction: 32% Jean Bart holds the distinction of being the most vulnerable of the tier IX battleships. However, she doesn't rank last because of some crippling flaw. Her armour protection is sufficient. Her consumables aren't broken in any way. It's really just a deficit of hit points combined with a vulnerability to HE shells that puts her in last place. Jean Bart's hit point total are not those of a tier IX battleship. With healing scaling directly with a ship's base hit points and lacking the portable dry-dock of the Royal Navy, Jean Bart starts off the Durability-race with an immediate disadvantage, but she's not so far behind as to no longer be competitive. While she doesn't have deep reserves of health to absorb damage (or the healing potion to recover from it), her citadel protection scheme isn't lacking. She has decent anti-torpedo defense, for example, sitting at a modest, but respectable 32% damage reduction (and a far cry better than most of the other tier IX battleships, I might add). Her citadel placement is very-French. Her magazines and machine spaces sit just beneath the waterline, protected by a 50mm turtleback and a reverse-sloped belt. Combined, Jean Bart is all but immune to citadel hits at a distance. However, the steep grade of her turtleback lets her down at point blank ranges. Like Alsace, Gascogne, Richelieu and République, she is exceedingly vulnerable in a close-range brawl to broadside citadel shots from large caliber AP shells. On the whole, Jean Bart stands up well to AP fire and torpedo hits. Against high explosive fire, her defense scheme fails utterly though. Jean Bart's citadel protection is complicated, formed up of no less than four layers, two of which aren't pictured here. The first is her 32mm anti-torpedo bulge (not shown). Then shells strike her upper (330mm) or lower (250mm) belt, though the latter will usually necessitate plunging through water first, further reducing penetration. After that, her 50mm turtleback (not shown) gets in the way. Finally, there's her citadel wall which is between 30mm overt he machine spaces and up to 50mm over her magazines. Jean Bart doesn't sport the weakness of a thin citadel roof allowing for overmatching like some Royal Navy battleships, boasting 50mm on top of her 150mm deck protection. Note this last part differs from her sister, Richelieu which has 170mm of deck protection over her magazines but only a 40mm citadel deck. The entirety of Jean Bart is covered in deliciously squishy 32mm of armour that just loves to give up hit points. The only exceptions are her bridge, main battery and anti-torpedo bulges and that's hardly enough to guarantee a large number of shell-shatters. Jean Bart is exceedingly vulnerable to 150mm+ HE fire buffed with the Inertial Fuse for HE shells commander skill. German cruisers and battleships secondaries can exact a costly sum too This flaw isn't unique to Jean Bart, with American and British battleships sharing a similar fear of HE spam. However, when you factor in Jean Bart's lower hit point total and lack of a British mega-heal, this weakness becomes more pronounced. You're going to want to make American light cruisers die quickly. Make sure you have your Main Battery Reload Booster handy when an opportunity comes up to delete one of those mother truckers. One a side note, her 32mm armour also gets undone by 460mm AP shells from Musashi and Yamato. So there's that too. This is why light cruisers (and ducky destroyers) love Jean Bart. Anything that's teal is fair game for ships that can muster up 32.5mm of penetration or more with their HE shells. The brown section along her hull represents her anti-torpedo bulge which will absorb HE hits without taking damage. Finally, Jean Bart enjoys relative immunity to American AP bombs. They lack the penetration sufficient to punch through the multiple layers of armour protecting her citadel. Graf Zeppelin can land the occasional citadel hit but, by and large, she struggles in the same manner as American dive bombers. Jean Bart will still take a healthy amount of damage from these attacks -- overpenetrations will be rare, but at least she won't be deleted outright. Evaluation: What it would have needed to be : Jean Bart would need a truckload more hit points, a special Repair Party consumable or deck and upper hull armour sufficient to stave off HE attacks from light cruisers. Agility Top Speed: 30.0 knots Port Turning Radius: 850m Rudder Shift: 16.0s Maximum Turn Rate: 4.1º/s Am I really going to talk about the manoevrability of the tier IX thunderchunkers again? Look, none of the tier IX battleships could ever be described as agile. The best that could be said is that some of them have the straight line speed when they care to exercise it. However, we all know that the current meta doesn't let battleships stretch their legs until later in the engagement. Thus those without aren't held back by any means and even Musashi's stately 27 knots is more than capable of keeping up with the pace of battle. Jean Bart isn't the fastest battleship at her tier. With her Engine Boost consumable operating, she can make 32.4kts which is still slower than the Iowa-class sisters. She can't boast the tighter turning radius or better rudder shift time of HMS Lion. What she can claim is to have a good rate of turn, keeping pace with Lion and Alsace. Where Jean Bart claims primacy (and I admit, this claim is tenuous), is the combination of all of her traits. She is not the fastest, but at least she's not the slowest either. She's at least faster than Lion which is arguably one of the frontrunners in this competition. She doesn't have the tightest turning radius, but it's only 20m behind that of the Lion and 40m better than her next closest competitor. Her rudder shift time isn't the fastest, but it's the second best at her tier. Jean Bart matches the best two battleships at her tier for rate of turn. ... and finally, she has the Engine Boost consumable. Engine Boost has always been the trump card of the French warships when it comes to contests of agility. With it, Jean Bart leaves Lion in her wake, not only figuratively but literally as well. She can come about faster. She can control engagement ranges more effectively. With Lion bested, Alsace is her only remaining competitor and Jean Bart's tighter turning radius and rudder shift time makes that a no-contest. Of course, besting Lion and Alsace doesn't make Jean Bart good in this category. In my opinion, none of the tier IX battleships are. But Jean Bart is at least the best of the sorry lot. Evaluation: What would have to happen to DOWNGRADE to : Loss of her Engine Boost alone would do it. When it's on cool down, she's no better than Lion. Anti-Aircraft Defense AA Battery Calibers: 152mm / 100mm / 57mm AA Umbrella Ranges: 5.0km / 4.5km AA DPS per Aura: 202.5 / 357 Raw DPS numbers (the graph on the left) can be deceiving. Range is an important factor with anti-aircraft defense and Jean Bart has this is in spades with all of her gun mounts. The graph on the right incorporates range into an equation to better evaluate the overall effectiveness of a ship's AA suite. This is calculated by taking the gun's range less 1km and multiplying it by DPS. While not an absolute measure by any means, it is indicative of the relative AA power of the ships in question. Jean Bart has god-tier anti-aircraft firepower. The only battleship in the game that tops her for effective AA cover is the personal rocket-powered umbrella of HMS Hood, and that's only when Her Majesty's ship is activating her Defensive AA Fire consumable. What makes Jean Bart's AA so effective is the combination of solid DPS numbers combined with her minimum of a 4.5km range. Fully upgraded, she's an absolute monster, outstripping even République and Montana for the potency of her flak. Like most battleships, most of her AA firepower is found in her medium caliber AA guns. Jean Bart's 57mm weapons don't stand up to HE any better than a 40mm Bofors nest, so she can be stripped of most of her threat to aircraft with the gentle caress from a Cockbote. Thus your AA power is inversely proportionate to the amount of HE fire you've taken. Given the current meta at high tiers, that's not going to be very high for very long. Evaluation: What would have to happen to DOWNGRADE to : A Cockbote serenade. Refrigerator Base Surface Detection Range: 16.38km Air Detection Range: 14.16km Minimum Surface Detection Range: 12.30km Detection Range when Firing from Smoke: 15.05km Main Battery Firing Range: 24.52km Jean Bart's concealment should be seen as "adequate" and nothing more. With the proper concealment build, she shares a surface detection rating with the Bismarck-sisters. She could certainly do worse. Few battleships reward concealment better than Jean Bart. As it is, even her middling concealment value risks making her overpowered. The most obvious use for her surface detection is to drop back into stealth when under fire. Jean Bart doesn't have the deep hit point reserves of other tier IX battleships, and having the ability to disengage at will is a useful trick. However, it's not this defensive ability that risks making Jean Bart an overpowered monster. It's her ability to use it offensively. No other battleship rewards an ambush play-style as much as Jean Bart. With her fast reload, good penetration and her Main Battery Reload Booster, having Jean Bart magically appear when you're at your most vulnerable is a nightmare scenario. This is where she scales so well with player skill -- those with the map knowledge and the willingness to push in order to set up ambushes get rewarded handsomely. Evaluation: What it would have needed to be : Losing a kilometer or two of surface detection off her base range would do it. How to Make Roma Look Inadequate There are three main builds that are effective for Jean Bart. The Baby Bunny Build is the ol' battleship standby. Go for survivability increase skills including Concealment Expert, Superintendent, Basics of Survivability and Fire Prevention. The Salty About CVs build makes Jean Bart the scourge of the skies. Grab anything that boosts your anti-aircraft batteries like Basic and Advanced Fire Training and Manual Fire Control for AA Guns. Finally, there's the dubiously effective (but exceedingly Manly) Secondary Build. You'll want all the fixings at tier 4 including Advanced Fire Training, Manual Fire Control for Secondary Armament and Inertial Fuse for HE Shells. You can choose between Expert Marksman and Adrenaline Rush at tier 2 depending on if you intend to brawl or not. Final Evaluation Jean Bart seems like such an unassuming design. Who would have thought that an upgraded, up-tiered Richelieu-class would be on my watch-list for one of the most over performing releases of this year? I don't doubt that like Musashi, she's going to fly beneath some players' radar. There will be those that simply do not appreciate the imbalance that Main Battery Reload Booster provides, even when shackled to such unassuming weapons as a mere eight 380mm rifles. To this end, I predict that Jean Bart will become the darling of those few that know how to time their shots and don't use it simply for a flat DPM increase. I do foresee Jean Bart causing issue with some of the more veteran players. Grace of her abilities, this is a ship that by her very design punishes people that try and flex. Lord knows I won't dare turn a ship broadside within 15km of her unless I know her consumable is on cool down. While I would like to think that her gunnery may correct some of the popularity of certain American light cruisers, her ballistics just aren't designed for that. In short, Jean Bart is just going to reinforce the passive meta, albeit without the same obvious ability as ships like Asashio. The final bit of upset Jean Bart may deliver is still far off in the future. She is the best anti-aircraft platform found among the current battleships. With the aircraft carrier rework still months away, it remains to be seen what kind of upset she can deliver to the future version of this game mode For now, keep an eye on this ship. She has comparable earning levels to Musashi and Kronshtadt, which is better than most tier VIII premiums (barring the use of Makoto Kobayashi camo). I still haven't been told how she's going to be made available (seriously). If it's for free experience or coal, you cannot go wrong with this ship. She's too good. Would I Recommend? Seeing as I don't know how she's being made available, take this section with a pinch of salt. She could very well be the next steel-ship to reward Ranked Battle players. She may only be available for free experience or coal. Wargaming has not directly sold any tier IX+ premiums yet, so it's doubtful she'll appear in the premium shop or for doubloons. We'll have to wait and see. PVE Battles How well does the ship maintain profitability in Co-Op modes and how does she fare against bots? Meh. While shooting down aircraft is hilarious in co-op, the propensity for enemy bots to charge bow in makes her 380mm guns feel inadequate. Go for a MANLY build or don't bother. It would be super cool if she could be used in Operation Hermes, though. I'm still poking Wargaming about that one. Random Battle Grinding: This includes training captains, collecting free experience, earning credits and collecting signal flags from achievements. Yes. The chaos of Random Battles serves Jean Bart and her god-tier consumable well. She earns a healthy wage too, which doesn't hurt either. For Competitive Gaming: Competitive Gaming includes Ranked Battles and other skill-based tournaments. This also includes stat-padding. No. Unlike in Randoms, it's less likely that your opponents are going to pull a stupid to make Jean Bart's Main Battery Reload Booster pay huge dividends. The more serious the competition, the less appealing she'll become. Plus Missouri has radar. For Collectors: If you enjoy ship history or possessing rare ships, this section is for you. Yes. She looks gorgeous and she's got a fair bit of history to her. For Fun Factor: Bottom line: Is the ship fun to play? Very yes on toast. After the first time you obliterate some poor sap coming about, you'll never be able to let go. What's the Final Verdict? How would the ship rate on an Angry YouTuber scale of Garbage - Meh - Gud - Overpowered? GARBAGE- The boat is unbalanced, not fun to play and weak. The ship desperately needs some buffs or some quality of life changes. Mehbote - An average ship. Has strengths and weaknesses. Doesn't need buffs to be viable however she's not going to be considered optimal. Gudbote - A powerful ship, often one of the best ships at a given role within its tier. Usually considered optimal for a given task. OVERPOWERED - The boat is unbalanced and powerful. Typically she's either horrible to play against or she redefines the meta entirely If I have to do this again, I'm getting out the crayons. In Closing Updated for October 23rd, 2018. Jean Bart was finalized shortly before this article was originally published. Three days later, they announced she was going back into testing because of concerns she was over performing. Frustrating as this could have been, the changes have been simple to account for. Jean Bart still risks being overpowered, but the circumstances are far more specific now. She's still a highly competitive ship, but without the clear cut dominance she could demonstrate with alarming reliability in randoms. Wargaming has been mum on what's coming out next. With the Aircraft Carrier rework choking the airwaves, it's a bit of a toss up. Le Terrible was finalized almost two weeks ago however I have not had access to her in order to be able to finish my review, so she's on hold for the time being. I'm mostly done reviewing Prinz Eitel Friedrich too, so it's a race to see which one gets the greenlight first. Thank you all for reading!  Appendix World of Warships AP Calculator (n.d.) https://mustanghx.github.io/ship_ap_calculator/
  14. I picked up the Alsace a week or so and I'm sincerely asking for help. 27 battles with it so far and I cannot get any spark going. Every fight feels like an ordeal. Does that ever happen to you guys with new ships? I'm not the best player. nor the most experienced (this is my first IX), but I'm not totally inept. I bought Alsace the moment I hung up 201k with the Richelieu, and have been 100% confounded, humbled and frustrated by it ever since. I rush in... I get torched. I hang back... I can't hit a goddamned thing. I try to be strategic, and eat 20k salvo after salvo. I've got the B hull, the longer range arty, and have tried two different setups for my 18-pt captain (survival, then secondary build). I know they recently nerfed the Alsace, but I had such an amazing time with the rest of the French BB line that I couldn't resist... 23 million credits later and I'm cursing myself. Alsace, so far, is my lowest K/D out of 15 battleships I've tried. It's abysmal. It's even worse than the Tier IIIs that I first fumbled around with: Any pointers? What am I missing? Am I washed up? I would greatly appreciate any advice, tactics, recommendations, etc. that you have. -Jake
  15. LittleWhiteMouse

    Premium Ship Review: Aigle

    The following is a review of Aigle, a ship kindly provided to me by Wargaming. This is the release version of the vessel and these stats are current as of January 24th, 2018. The Baker's Dozen Quick Summary: A massive destroyer with ridiculously powerful guns and hard hitting torpedoes. Cost: Undisclosed at the time of publishing. Patch & Date Written: Patch 0.6.14 to 0.7.01, November 30th, 2017 until January 24th, 2018. PROs Huge hit point pool for a tier VI destroyer at 17,000hp. Armed with five139mm guns -- the largest gun caliber that can still benefit from destroyer sized gun skills. Very long ranged for a destroyer with a 12.8km reach. Excellent fire chance per shell of 9% Enormous warhead charge on her torpedoes, dealing a massive 18,400 damage per hit. Engine Boost consumable lets her top 43 knots for two-minute stretches. Her horn sounds like a choo-choo train. CONs Horrible turret traverse. Low velocity shells with high ballistic arcs and long lead times at range. Appalling fire arcs on her guns and uninspiring ones on her torpedoes too. Large turning circle of 680m and sluggish handling for a destroyer. Punitive surface detection range and unable to stealth-fire torpedoes without Concealment Expert. Very reliant on commander skills to make her comfortable to play. Overview BAD - One of, if not the worst at its tier. This is a pronounced weakness. FAIR - Middle of the pack at its tier. Not terrible, but not terribly good either.GOOD - Has a significant advantage over her tier mates. A solid, competitive performer.BEST - No other ship at its tier does this as well as this ship. Aigle is enormous, with powerful artillery, ridiculously hard hitting torpedoes, a huge slug of hit points and the ability to do in excess of 43 knots. She pays for it with horrible anti-aircraft firepower and a terrible concealment values. Skill Floor: Simple / Casual / Challenging / Difficult Skill Ceiling: Low / Moderate / High / Extreme This isn't a destroyer with which you can easily hide and attack enemies. Inexperienced players will find her awkward and impossible to conceal. She has the striking power to impress veterans, provided they can stomach the limitations of her weapon systems. Knowing how to use and abuse island cover is one of the key skills needed to excel in this ship. Options Consumables: Aigle's Engine Boost consumable is worth taking a closer look. Aigle's Damage Control Party is standard for a destroyer with a 60 second / 40 second reset timer. Her Smoke Generator is also standard with a 20 second emission time. Each cloud lasts for 81 seconds and the consumable has either a 240 seconds or 160 second reset timer. Finally, her Engine Boost consumable increases the ship's speed by 20% instead of 8%. This lets Aigle reach theoretical maximums of 43.2 knots for up to two minutes with 180 second / 120 second reset timer. Premium Camouflage: Aigle has the tier VI Type 10 Camouflage. This provides 50% bonus experience gains, a 10% reduction to maintenance costs, 3% reduction in surface detection and 4% reduction in enemy accuracy. Module Upgrades: Four slots, standard destroyer options. In your first slot, take Magazine Modification 1. You may be huge. You may have a ton of hit points, but you're still a destroyer with squishy magazines. Next up, take Propulsion Modification 1 to help keep your engines from being disabled. If you have access to it, take Engine Boost Modification 1 instead -- it plays up to Aigle's strengths. Aiming Systems Modification 1 is optimal in your third slot, mostly because Aigle's AA guns are terrible. In your fourth slot, Propulsion Modification 2 to give you a little more acceleration from when you're hiding in smoke. Firepower Primary Battery: Five 139mm rifles in individual turrets in an A-B-P-X-Y superfiring configuration. P is rear facing. Torpedoes: Six tubes in 2x3 launchers Aigle has awesome weaponry. On paper, she's the knees of the bees. Unfortunately, this is largely undone by poor fire arcs, awful gun handling and the combined issues of range and concealment. How much these affect you largely depends on your tolerance for wonky fields of fire and how reliant you are upon being sneaky to succeed in a destroyer. Artillery Poor fire arcs on French destroyers is nothing new. Cyclone, released in July of 2017, gave us the first hint of the travesty that would be Aigle's fields of fire and I'm not terribly optimistic about future releases being exempt from similar issues. To fire all five of Aigle's guns, you need to present yourself at near a full broadside to your foe, with a 57º off your bow to fire forward and a 59º fire angle off your stern when firing backwards. This is largely untenable in the thick of fighting -- not unless you want to sail in a straight line and give your opponents an easy shot. It's more realistic to expect that Aigle will typically fire with three guns (ABX forward, PXY backwards) which undermines the fearsome damage-per-minute (DPM) numbers she should (in theory) be able to boast. Her sluggish turret traverse of 6.5º/s only further complicates matters, making Aigle's gunnery uncomfortable under any kind of manoeuvres. The last flaw to speak of in regards to Aigle's gun performance is her shell ballistics. Her guns are not the high-velocity rifles of the Soviet Navy which hurts her ability to bombard targets at range. They are comparable in shell flight time to Japanese destroyers at a distance, but with a lower initial muzzle velocity. This is exacerbated by Aigle's poor concealment characteristics where she's often forced to bombard targets from longer range. Nine and ten second lead times are not uncommon, and worse if you add on Advanced Fire Training. The plus side to her ballistics was that she could park behind some islands and lob shells at distant targets and hammer them over and over, undetected and safe from reprisals. This is just one extra challenge to unlock the awesome damage potential of these guns. You can undercut these traverse and fire angle flaws (though there's nothing to be done about floaty ballistics). Aigle's 139mm guns benefit fully from Basic Fire Training and Expert Marksman. The former will prop up your flagging DPM while the latter will increase her turret rotation speed to 9.0º per second -- more than enough to keep up with the manoeuvres you'll put Aigle through. You can also simply tank your way through return fire from enemy destroyers while keeping four or five guns trained on them, confident you can out trade their fire. Feel free to play with Advanced Fire Training if you'd like, but the ballistic arcs that far out are hilarious. You shouldn't worry too much about concealment issues, though -- Aigle is already one of the largest destroyers out there and hiding in open water just isn't something she does well. Seriously? Ew. In payment for the aforementioned flaws, you get a monster. Aigle feels like some Frankenstein's golem, combining facets from different destroyer gunnery and creating something entirely new. Her 139mm shells are huge. For a destroyer, they do great damage, penetrate well, start fires easily and all without sacrificing rate of fire. It's the little things which add up too. For example, Aigle's AP shells have the same longer fuse timer as American 127mm/38s found on their destroyers. This gives the shells more time to punch through the layers of armour that protect the machine spaces of some cruisers. This makes Aigle a greater threat to the citadels of cruisers than many of the other destroyers. You're more likely to see full damage citadel hits than just penetrations when you ambush an enemy cruiser at close range. Aigle's guns also boast similar penetration power to the high velocity 130mm of the Soviets, making her capable of besting up to 80mm at 11km and 100mm of steel at 8km -- values which echo the citadel protection around many tier VI and V light cruisers, incidentally. Her HE is also arguably the best at her tier. She inflicts high shell damage but she's also the best fire bug at her tier. With Inertial Fuse for HE Shells (IFHE), she's capable of damaging the extremities of all but the tier VIII battleships. As a destroyer, she only loses 1% fire chance for this skill, it still keeps her viable as a fire starter. Be advised that without IFHE, big as Aigle's guns are, they're not capable of damaging the extremities of tier VI and VII battleships and tier VIII heavy cruisers which will see a huge drop in your damage done. AP in blue, HE in violet. Aigle will often struggle to get all five guns on target. It's fair to say I have a love-hate relationship with Aigle's gunnery. Her damage potential is the siren's call which made me want to take her out time and again. For every game where I got into an ideal position and could rain Hell down on my enemies, there were games where I had to run and hide from enemy lolibotes and cruisers. This isn't a destroyer where knife fighting is comfortable -- even with Expert Marksman, your fire arcs are going to leave you way too vulnerable to broadsides of torpedoes if you want to trade DPM. If you can park and blaze away, you'll do well with Aigle. If you're asked to move and fight, these guns will trip you up every time. Torpedoes There's not much to say about Aigle's torpedoes. She doesn't get a lot of them, for one. This contrasts with the stupidly huge warheads grafted to them which hit harder than any other fish at her tier, including the Pan Asian and Japanese destroyers which typically have the monopoly on such things. Their chance for causing floods is second only to Fushun's at tier VI. There are two problems I have with Aigle's torpedoes and they compound. They're slow. They're very difficult to fire from concealment. Short of ambushes around islands or suicide-torp runs, landing torpedo hits with Aigle's torpedoes is difficult. Sure, they're hilarious as all get out when they smack something, but good luck setting that up. It's impossible to launch her torpedoes from stealth without a full concealment build on your ship and commander. What's more, her fire arcs aren't especially generous (they're not terrible, but they're not great), so whipping your ship around to dump fish against an enemy coming towards you can often give yourself away. And, once they've seen you, they're going to turn. The slow speed of Aigle's fish means even a minor course adjustment will see your fish swim past their target without biting. Overall, Aigle's torpedoes are a lot like her guns -- you want to use them but they'll fight you every step of the way. They're hilarious when they work though and that alone will keep you trying. Aigle's has narrow torpedo arcs directly off her sides, requiring you to expose her full broadside in order to launch. Summary: Hard hitting. Horrible fire arcs. Can you overlook the latter in order to enjoy the former? Evaluation: GOOD What it would have needed to be BEST: Aigle isn't a torpedo boat. She's a gunship, first and foremost with torpedoes as incidental backups. Thus her merits are largely weighed upon her gunnery. As good as Aigle's guns are, they aren't the best. Farragut's guns put out more damage and are better suited to knife fighting. Gaede's 150mm are better for punishing larger warships. Aigle is a generalist, and a good one, with guns that can make a destroyer balk with the first broadside and make a battleship player grind their teeth with frustration at the incessant 139mm bombs being dropped on their decks. And just wait until you read what T-61 can do... Manoeuvrability Top Speed: 36.0 knotsTurning Radius: 680mRudder Shift: 4.1s Maximum Turn Rate: 6.8º/s at 4/4 speed If there was one flaw upon which to set all of Aigle's manoeuvrability woes, it's her enormous turning circle which lets her down. It's not the worst we've ever seen among destroyers (Ernst Gaede is worse within the same tier), but it holds her back. Combined with her modest top speed, this leads to a sluggish rate of turn for a destroyer and makes her more akin in handling to a nimble light cruiser than her fellow lolibotes. However, with the touch of a button you can alleviate Aigle's woes. Her Engine Boost consumable is phenomenal. Aigle launches from a 36 knot top speed to over 43 knots for two-minute intervals (three minutes with Engine Boost Modification 1). This also spikes her rate of turn from 6.8º per second up to 7.4º per second allowing her to come about more quickly too. With her boost, Aigle transforms from a dumpybutt to a rocketbutt -- untouchable within her own tier and competitive with everything she may encounter. The only down side to her Engine Boost consumable is those two minutes in between (premium) reset timers where you have to go back to being terrible Evaluation: FAIR What it would have needed to be GOOD: Aigle is a long way off from "GOOD" and only spared a "BAD" label because of her Engine Boost consumable. Aigle is so fast with her Speed Boost active, even my screenshots of her have speed lines. Rate of Turn There are several factors which affect how quickly a ship comes about. The most significant are the ship's forward momentum and the size of her turning radius. As a ship slows down, her turning radius changes, but not always for the better. To make things more complicated, different ships also preserve speed better in a turn. When it comes to changing your heading, keep up your speed. If you want a tighter turning circle with Aigle, slow down to 3/4s or 1/2 engine power -- you'll shave off 100m of her turning radius which can help you avoid islands. Just be aware you will not come about as quickly. Steering Gears Modification 2 reduces Aigle's rudder shift time from 4.1s down to 3.3s. However, this does not noticeably affect her turning values. This upgrade is a placebo and not a practical bonus. When attempting to measure the gains made, some of the results fell within the margin of error of my reaction time and were impossible to tell apart. 360º Rotation Rate (Ship Maximums): 1/4 speed (8.8 knots): 2.0º/s rotation, ~688m turning radius 1/2 speed (16.9 knots): 4.5º/s rotation, ~581m turning radius 3/4 speed (23.6 knots): 6.2º/s rotation, ~592m turning radius 4/4 speed (30.3 knots): 6.8º/s rotation, ~687m turning radius BOOSTED (34.9 knots): 7.4º/s rotation, ~732m turning radius 90º Rotation Rate (Stock): 1/4 speed: 1.9º/s rotation for 46.8s 1/2 speed: 4.3º/s rotation for 20.8s 3/4 speed: 5.8º/s rotation for 15.6s 4/4 speed: 6.3º/s rotation for 14.2s BOOSTED: 6.9º/s rotation for 13.0s 90º Rotation Rate (Steering Gears Modification 2) 1/4 speed: 2.0º/s rotation for 46.1s 1/2 speed: 4.4º/s rotation for 20.5s 3/4 speed: 5.9º/s rotation for 15.4s 4/4 speed: 6.4º/s rotation for 14.0s BOOSTED: 7.0º/s rotation for 12.8s Durability Hit Points: 17,000 Maximum Protection: 16mm Ah, destroyer durability. So straightforward. Aigle has the most hit-points at tier VI -- even more than Ernst Gaede's 16,500hp. This makes her the defacto toughest destroyer. But, don't get complacent. Glue on Survivability Expert to top yourself up to 19,1000hp to keep your primacy. Remember to guard your magazines with Magazine Modification 1 and/or a Juliet Charlie signal lest you find yourself unseated. You're still a destroyer after all. The glut of hit points on Aigle will serve you well, provided you can spend them wisely. Use them to clinch knife fights -- just make sure you dodge those fish. Evaluation: BEST What it would have needed to be GOOD: Destroyer durability is pretty straight forward until you start to see weird bits of armour-plate capable of causing ricochet at higher tiers. None of that's present here, so barring her spawning multiple magazines running the length of the ship, Aigle is safely the best of the bunch with the largest hit point pool. Anti-Aircraft Defense AA Battery Calibers: 37mm / 13.2mm AA Umbrella Ranges: 3.0km / 1.2km AA DPS per Aura: 5 / 19 Aigle's anti-aircraft firepower is all kinds of terrible and there's not a lot you can do to improve the situation. Given her size and her large turning circle, enemy aircraft are particularly dangerous for this destroyer and they have every reason to glue themselves to you and keep you from sitting safely back and using your guns to your heart's content. Aigle is so large that aircraft can spot her without even slipping into her AA bubble. A CV could (in theory), keep her permanently lit without any risk to her own reserves whatsoever. Evaluation: BAD What it would have needed to be FAIR: AA guns that were actually a threat to enemy aircraft. Vision Control Base Surface Detection Range: 7.74km Air Detection Range: 4.35km Minimum Surface Detection Range: 6.76km Detection Range when Firing from Smoke: 3.11km Main Battery Firing Range: 12.78km This isn't a destroyer you want to use to scout early on in a match. Aigle's surface detection range is enormous -- the worst at her tier. While she doesn't also have the worst surface detection range for a destroyer within her matchmaking spread, but she's close. There are all of two (2) destroyers that she will normally meet that she can out-spot: Mahan and Kiev. That's it. Your only hope otherwise is to run into players that are not running full concealment builds on their destroyers. You're going to be spotted first -- it's best to accept that early and change your play style to reflect it. Contesting cap circles early on in a match is probably not a good idea; not unless you know what you're facing and that they're unsupported.. Aigle does not knife fight with enemy destroyers well -- between her clumsy handling, bad gun fire angles and slow turret traverse, getting in close is an unnecessary risk. Pushing early means you're going to hemorrhage that hit point advantage of yours without gain. Save them for when you isolate an enemy destroyer later in a match and can out trade her. The biggest casualty to Aigle's poor concealment is the use of her torpedoes. She can't fire them from stealth without a commander using Concealment Expert and even then, your margin of error is a mere 240m. You're really just limited to ambush scenarios or firing them at distracted enemies. It's possible (and not necessarily a bad idea) to dispense with using Concealment Expert altogether and play Aigle like a light cruiser with added speed flexibility and immunity to citadel hits. Evaluation: BAD What it would have needed to be FAIR: A good start would be getting that glaringly obvious red X13 off the side of the hull. Contesting cap circles early on in a match isn't what Aigle is designed for. Countdown to Blastoff: X Minus 13 You're going to want a dedicated French destroyer commander for Aigle. I tried playing with my French Light cruiser commander during play tesitng and quickly grew to regret it. Start with Priority Target for your first skill. If you're omniscient (or just reckless), you can take Preventative Maintenance instead. You're a destroyer, so Last Stand is a must -- especially if you took Engine Boost Modification 1. Follow this up with Survivability Expert to boost up your HP even further. And finally, allow yourself to stay hidden with Concealment Expert. For your next nine points, sink them into the following: Inertial Fuse for HE Shells, Basic Fire Training and Expert Marksman. This will give you the punch you need to directly damage battleships, the extra rate of fire to spike your DPM and improved gun handling to help mitigate her terrible fire arcs when you do have to fight another destroyer. Alternative builds are possible, especially where you drop any pretense of trying to hide this ship and don't take Concealment Expert. The four points could be freed up for skills like Demolition Expert, Adrenaline Rush or Superintendent. Final Evaluation Mouse's Summary: Aigle: Big guns. Big fish. Big butt. Most premium ships have a paywall. Some premium ships have a skill wall. Aigle has a patience wall. Without the right commander skills, this is a terrible ship. Aigle looks so much better than she is This is one of those ships that if you only saw her statistics, you could be forgiven for getting really excited. Playing her is much more mixed. Sure, she can do a lot of damage when everything works right but it's a lot of work. It's safe to say that I didn't enjoy Aigle overmuch, even if I recognize how potentially powerful she could be for someone who could get over the frustrations of her weapon handling. Aigle is a good ship hamstrung by poor fire arcs. She's not a traditional destroyer. She shares more in common with some of the late tier Soviet destroyers like Tashkent, Kiev and Khabarovsk but without the stupendous ballistics that makes long-range gunnery on said ships so comfortable. Still, Aigle is advantageous with the right setup. Having that commander build is key. I found she played best when you could park her behind a low island and hammer cruisers and battleships over and over and over again with her shellfire while they dueled with my team mates. The sting of Aigle's fish guaranteed that pushing around the islands was a bad choice for my enemies. This only worked when CVs left me alone, but that's a common lament for most destroyers. The catch is, I had to know where on each map I could abuse this and not all of them were accommodating. This is a support gunship -- a baby cruiser, as it were. Play her with these expectations and you should do alright. The lack of concealment doesn't damn Aigle, nor does awkward gun handling (though the latter is a close thing). However, the two together does sour me. I am a big advocate for concealment dominating games. When concealment isn't available, then a ship must out fight or outrun from threats. Aigle struggles to do the former without the right build (get those 19,100hp and bump up your rate of fire!). And the latter? Well, Aigle's Engine Boost is all kinds of phenomenal. If it feels like I'm holding back on singing Aigle's praises, it's because I am. I hate feeling like I'm fighting with the ship to make it perform and bad fire arcs really soured me to her. It didn't help that I was playing with my French Cruiser commander through much of the early play-test and I had a less than ideal build going, but that's on me. I was so twisted against Aigle, I nearly slapped her with a bad review because of the negative bias I was feeling. It took putting a 19pt commander on her with the right build and just sitting down and weighing all the paper data that I had to finally cement in my mind that Aigle was a better ship than I was initially giving credit. I still didn't enjoy her, per se, but that didn't prevent her from being a good ship. She's well-balanced. She has her flaws (flaws that rub me the wrong way especially) but she's not some overpowered monster, nor some gutterfluff piece of trash. At the end of the day, it was difficult to pin an Angry YouTuber label to her. What finally clinched it for me was defining the role that Aigle took. She was a support ship, that much was evident, and looking at the other destroyers in her tier, she had the most overlap with the German destroyer, Ernst Gaede. I had to ask myself, between the two ships, which was better? I kept reaching the conclusion that even with Aigle's advantages in speed and hit points, Gaede was better between them. When it came to hammering larger ships, Gaede did it better. When it came to using torpedoes, Gaede does it better. When it comes to supporting a cap circle, Gaede is simply more versatile with her Hydroacoustic Search consumable. Sorry, Aigle. You're good. You're damn good, even. You're just not the best at your given job. Made in German smug. Would I Recommend? On the whole, I say "non, merci" to Aigle. France isn't hurting for good premiums at the moment. Maybe Aigle will look a little more attractive when the French destroyer line is closer to finished. PVE Battles How well does the ship maintain profitability in Co-Op modes and how does she fare against bots? Yes. Aigle will do just fine in Co-Op and Scenarios. Between her range, firepower, that huge chunk of hit points and her Engine Boost consumable, she's very versatile. Random Battle Grinding:This includes training captains, collecting free experience, earning credits and collecting signal flags from achievements. Not especially, no. At the same tier you could get De Grasse or, for a few bucks more, Dunkerque. They would serve you better as commander trainers with France having a cruiser and upcoming battleship line. De Grasse practically prints Arsonist medals. The necessity of an experience commander with a lot of skill points works against Aigle being a good trainer. For Competitive Gaming:Competitive Gaming includes Ranked Battles and other skill-based tournaments. This also includes stat-padding. No. Wait for T-61. For Collectors:If you enjoy ship history or possessing rare ships, this section is for you. I'd give her a pass. Aigle didn't have a very auspicious career (she was sunk twice). However, that could be said of most of the more modern French designs in World of Warships. At least she was built in steel For Fun Factor: Bottom line: Is the ship fun to play? Very nope. I did not enjoy this ship. If you have more patience than I for horrible gun arcs and bad turret traverse, have at her. What's the Final Verdict?How would the ship rate on an Angry YouTuber scale of Garbage - Meh - Gud - Overpowered? GARBAGE - The boat is unbalanced, not fun to play and weak. The ship desperately needs some buffs or some quality of life changes.Mehbote - An average ship. Has strengths and weaknesses. Doesn't need buffs to be viable however she's not going to be considered optimal.Gudbote - A powerful ship, often one of the best ships at a given role within its tier. Usually considered optimal for a given task.OVERPOWERED - The boat is unbalanced and powerful. Typically she's either horrible to play against or she redefines the meta entirely. In Closing The Aigle has landed. Thank you to my patrons on Patreon for their support in January for helping get this review out. I actually managed to take some time for myself (gasp!) and enjoy the game over the last week. Much of this was spent playing Co-Op of all things, crunching through the High School Fleet event to grind out the flags and camouflages on offer. Musashi, Yamato and Harekaze got a lot of play time and I even poked out with HSF Graf Spee a couple of times to collect the boxes I needed. Meanwhile, I haven't really touched Roma at all since release. It's still early yet and I'm still in the middle of crunch time with content creation. When things get a little less hectic, maybe I'll have a better idea if any of these ships will become new favourites. Aigle's not likely to make the cut. As much fun as her choo-choo train horn is, I feel no inclination to add her to my roster. My current ten favourite premium ships. Top Row: Fujin, Atlanta, De Grasse, Prinz Eugen, Atago. Bottom Row: Scharnhorst, Nelson, Harekaze, König Albert, Warspite. Appendix A list of sites, programs and people I rely upon to create my reviews. Thanks go out to iChase, NoZoupForYou, the World of Warships Wiki staff and Pigeon_of_War for their assistance with research. Most of all, everyone's favourite box-bound kitty, Lert, gets a special thank you for being the first to volunteer whenever I need help. With every review, he's behind the scenes providing feedback, proofreading, monotonously twirling ships and assisting with screenshots. And last, and definitely not least, one final thank you to all of my patrons on Patreon who help make these insane research projects possible. If you enjoy my reviews, please consider offering your support. For the complete list of my reviews, please visit:
  16. I've been studying mexican naval history for the past year or so, came across some interesting adquisitions that the navy did on the early XX century up to the 1950's. In april of 1924, the mexican navy bought the brasilian Coastal Defense Battleship Marechal Deodoro, the lead ship of the two in the Deodoro class. The ship is pretty much a Jaureguiberry design, which dates back to 1890's. Yes, a pre-dreadnought french battleship The Marechal Deodoro was completed in 1900 and during it's service on the Brasilian navy had an... interesting service record, it would shell down a rebellion on the Praia Vermelha Military Academy, it'd also take part in different mutinies, most of them on a racial nature. In 1912 the armament and propulsion got overhauled in Rio de Janeiro. After it was sold to the Mexican navy it got renamed as ARM Anahuac (Namesake from the region Cem Anahuac. From the native language nahuatl ā meaning water and nāhuac meaning close to, roughly translating to Civilization close to the river) It was obviously pretty obsolete at the time, It was even considered obselete 6 years after it's completion when the Dreadnought Battleships became a thing. Saw little to no action in the mexican service, and eventually got scrapped in 1938. It had a length of 81.5m, a beam of 14.4m and a draught of 4.19m, a displacement of 3,162tons. The armament that it had was -2 single 234mm/45 Armstrong turrets -4 single 120/40 Armstrong turrets -6 57/40 Hotchkiss dual purpose guns. -2 450mm Torpedo tubes (Some sources list a slightly different configuration with the addition of 2 6in howitzer, although I cannot find any information about them) Also, there's many information that I cannot get my hands on, (Assuming that it exists in the first place) since photographs are scarce and most of the ship's service info is mostly at an archive of the navy in Mexico City or the First Naval Region in Veracruz, which obviously and sadly cannot be accesed like going into a library. The images are the original Jaureguiberry design, two scaled models of the ARM Anahuac exposed at the Naval Museum in mexico city (Now that museum does not exist anymore, and the models are probably displayed at the naval museum in Veracruz) and a photo of the ship when it was at Rio de Janeiro probably around 1913.
  17. 07Beast109

    French Cvs

    Has anyone heard any talk about French Carriers, coming in game anytime. Since the French did actually build some CVs
  18. Looking for suggestions on the first 4 point skill for French BB's. I can change later, so for now I'm looking for advice for probably tiers 4-7. I understand the secondaries are nice, but for the lower tiers as I gain some experience I think I prefer a safety approach playing at some range. So thinking concealment for the first 4 pointer. However the rental Dunkurque I'm starting the Captain with seems to catch fire more than other BB's I've played so I wonder about Fire Prevention too. I'll probably add AFT at tier 8 and up. Thanks
  19. I was really interested in doing this event, but realized this weekend there is no point in continuing. The amount of hours to complete the next stage for the tier 5 premium is just not worth it. As a new player the number and lines of ships I have is limited. I only have three lines of ships capable of doing the stages. I only had two, so this weekend I level up British DD's and was planning to do thee more lines (German, Japanese and Russian), but the work to get ships up to a tier where they can earn the credits in a timely manner, is just not worth the effort. This is not much of an issue for older players who have a number of high tier premium ships to use, but for me it is a huge amount of work. I don't run premium, except sometimes on the weekends, so the amount of work required to get this done is twice what a premium account requires and I don't have premium ships of other nationalities to complete all 6 directives. I seriously considered going premium and even had my finger on the button to do three months, but after this event I realized this game is turning into a grind fest, so I doubt I will ever move to a premium account. I've managed to open two of the bundle containers only because I got lucky and found two French destroyer missions, but I know that the odds of getting to the bundle containers, no matter how hard I work, are very poor. I could put in 30 hours in the next week and most likely never get to the 4th bundle. As a new player, I don't have near enough ships to get them with snowflakes, so I have to rely on lucky drops, which from what I have seen don't seem to be going in my favor, though I have been significantly luckier then a lot of people. I tried to complete the 2nd Twitch mission (hurt me) for a couple more crates, but it requires me to get 2750 base exp, which at least for me, is incredibly difficult. I have had 3-4 games, where I had enough kills and other flags to reach that amount, but my team lost and only ended up with half base exp I've needed. I stopped even trying yesterday. For new players, this event is a huge grind for little chance of getting the rewards. It seems extremely poorly designed, with no thought at all given to new players, or even older players that don't have a bunch of ships. If this is a sign of what's to come, why bother spending money, so I can grind. Lastly. Working so hard and getting so little in return is just not fun. I play to have fun and trying to complete the event has removed a lot of the fun from the equation. I feel completely defeated and just going to work on the normal mission crates and if I get the other rewards, so be it. Does anyone at Wargaming even understand how difficult they are making these events for new players? So I just finished the British line. Expected to see a nice French crate drop, but no, just a $300,000 credits. I thought, "what the hell" and took another look at the event. It appears the most I can hope for at this point is one French container from the French line. I wasn't lucky enough to get any of the tier 7,8,9 French DD's so I can't do any of the others unless I buy a bunch of premium ships. All the other crate drops require one of the higher end French DD's or premium ships (like the Acosta) from those lines, which I don't have. I cannot believe I wasted all this time on this. All this time to have no chance at all at getting the premium items unless I want to spend $100.00 on ships I might not even like. Are you kidding me? This is Wargaming's idea of a well designed event? What a pile of crap. I'm am sure this event will cause a lot of new players to just drop the game. I'm seriously considering uninstalling.
  20. Oldschool_Gaming_YT

    Review: T6 Geupard, French Destroyer

    Hey guys! Managed to get the mission for the T5&6 destroyers Jaguar and Geupard from some premium containers gifted to me from a subscriber so I thought I put my review here if any other players are struggeling with this ship and maybe want some tips and tricks on how to play it to its strength. The T6 Geupard is a pretty good representation of the French destroyer line or what to expect from the upcoming ships in the line. The T6 Geupard is the first ship in the line that can slot the upgraded speed boost module to get your French speed boost to last 4.5 minutes, but more important, it doesn't have access to the Main Battery Reload Booster that is the game changer for this line and what transformes the T6 Geupard to a very dangerous Destroyer Hunter/Killer if played right. I also have to say this. Having only played the T5 and 6 so far I can see a huge potential in this line. That said, I dont think this line is for everyone, I dont think this line is for the average, casual player. This line is high risk/skill, high reward!! But if you make mistakes in these ships you will get punished .... HARD! So for a DD main like me, that has been a DD main since CBT, and loves a challange, I see many fun games for me in the future, grinding this line. But having played all the other lines and also only having experience of the T5 & T6 of this line so far I think the skill floor for these destroyers are quite high, higher then any other DD line in my experence. All other DD lines usually have some redeeming treats, smoke, good stealth, good AA or maybe some heals. This line will reward players that knows when to stop fireing, players who know when to engage and when to go dark. Players that can read and interpret information given to him from the game and and the minimap. You dont have any heals in these ships. To become successful you need to rely on your cunning and ability to setup perfect ambush points on the map for the enemy DDs to maximize on the potential of your speed and MBRB. So here is my review on the T6 Geupard. First I will do a quick rundown of its stats and modules, then I will showcase a whole bunch of situations in games where I implement this Hunter/KIller playstyle that these ships exxel at. And last I will showcase a 6 kills 120 K damage game, many of my games in the Geupard end around 4 kills and 100 K damage, usually taken out 50-75% of their DD fleet. In the end I will showcase my captainbuild so far for this ship, still a WIP tho.
  21. ...This is my first game in the French T7 DD Vauqelin: ...and I thought that was kind of cool since I went into the game expecting rather different results.
  22. rafael_azuaje

    why JAGUAR hot hve smoke???

    I have the jaguar destroyer french , he is great but not have smoke , why? https://imge.to/i/kWUbx he is good DD but not smoke no fun.
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